Last summer when the toilet fell through
The floor, I was warned then that
There would be no Christmas this year for us.
And while watching red tailed hawks doing
Mock battles in the hot summer sky
Christmas seemed so far away then.
I really didn’t care.
But now the cold and damp of East Texas
Has fallen upon us
And as the sun sinks lower into the sky
And everyone’s lawns are bejeweled with
The sensations of
crept upon me
And it seems to me
That Christmas is a holiday
Only for the rich.
And so I seethed with envy
Wallowed in self pity
Bemoaning the fact that
Once again, there’s not enough.
And resenting those who do.
But what is enough?
My bills are all paid in full.
There’s food in the pantry
My son is grown with a home of
The house and the car are
Both paid for.
What more could a Junior Bird Woman want?
Really? What do I need?
Aside from Dharma books
A blanket to wrap up in when I meditate
A few prayer flags
Which I could get any time.
What about the peace of mind that comes
From not having to worry about the wolf
Not only coming to the door
But beating down the door
And having pups?
What about the joy of practicing with an authentic
Teacher once a week?
What about the pleasure of having a loving husband
Who gives the world’s best neck rubs?
What about a loving thoughtful son who helps out
As best he can?
How do these things compare to the desire
For some silly electronic gadget that will
Once it’s taken out of the box?
Aren't these joys better than material things?
Are these things not better than being jealous
Because someone has more money than I do?
Can I not, like the masters of old, simply be happy
With what I have?
And more importantly, can I not be happy for those
Who are comfortable, who have money for more food
Clothing and gifts under their trees, than I?
Should I not think more about what I could do for those
Who are in worse financial shape than I am?
I could donate my excess clothing to the women’s shelter
I could donate gently read non Dharma books to the library.
I could make tsa-tsas for hospice patients who desire one.
I could do these things at Christmas, but it would be better still
To do these things all year round.
My Christian family and friends would say that
Jesus is the reason for the season.
And that may be true, if you wish to practice generosity
Once every year.
Isn’t it better, however, to practice generosity
Every day of the year?
There is no compassion
There is no love
And with no love
There is no peace
Enjoy your holiday
Care for others
All year round
And at ease.
Om mani padme hum
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