Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Mind's Medicine for Positive Living

Lately, I have been drawn toward the so-called buddoblogosphere, a term I first came across here with the definition "buddhist blogging outside walled social communities". On further exploration, I landed on several Chinese buddhist blogs, one of which has this great article, literaly translated, Mind's Medicine for Positive Living.

Succumbing to my translation bug, here I'm at it again. The writer started off with observing that life is rife with ironies, and it is easy for us to get lost in the vast ocean of humanity, being pushed around in circles, oblivious to the fact that we do and can have a say on where we are headed: feeding our mind with the right medicine. And herein is the writer's brand of mind's medicine toward positive living. Partake of them and decide for yourself that life can be what you make it out to be: a virtuous cycle.

Those of you who have seen my previous attempts would know that I have always exercised some liberty in paraphrasing the substance of the original work rather than literal translation of the form. And this is no exception.

Mind's Medicine for Positive Living

Our lives on this mundane world is full of contrast: short and yet circuitous; blessed and yet hapless; illustrious and yet forlorn; joyous and yet sorrowful; happy and yet disappointed; magnificent and yet despondent; wholesome and yet callous; magical and yet ordinary; beautiful and yet destitute; loving and yet envious; upright and yet petty; reaping and yet slipping away, etc.

A kind Mind, loving kindness and eagerness in giving.
Everyone is naturally endowed with kindness. There is no pretension, nor feigning. Once imbued with kindness, we will have to live by principles. No longer is minding our own business an option, neither is aloofness, regarding everything else being beneath us, a compatible frame of mind. Rather, we ought to voluntarily put “a good deed a day” into action, reaping the richness in the merits accrued. Loving kindness emanates within us without coercion, a natural outpouring of genuine caring, a self-driven manifestation of the earnest desire to give. A kind disposition makes for harmony and begets reciprocity, the wholesome merits that ensue permeating our world with love.

A broad mind, its expansiveness all-embracing.
As the Chinese saying goes, broadness of mind and the girth of body goes hand in hand, therefore a perpetual smile is the trademark of one who is thus equipped, caressing everyone he/she coming into contact with like a spring breeze. The seed can't be as big as the tree; the tree can't be as high as the mountain; the mountain can't be as huge as the ocean; but the ocean is not as infinite as our mind is.

An upright mind, like a beacon illuminating the righteous path.
Uprightness of mind banishes all selfish thoughts, accentuating a steadfastness toward transparency. Being upright is not taking chances when opportunity knocks, but embracing humility at its core. Neither is it a cunning employed to coax compliance, but is an outright offer of help. Being upright is not scheming to collude, but is dealing in the open, transparency being paramount. Neither is it trickery, but intentional scrutiny to ascertain shortcomings for timely redressal. The last but not the least, being upright is not short-changing on impulse, but determining to be even-keeled.

A tranquil mind, like still water.
Tranquility comes from an equanimity of mind, unperturbed by life's ongoings. A tranquil mind manifests in being comfortable at laughing at the vicissitude of life, and is the epitome of our ascension to a new us.

A carefree mind, one at ease.
A carefree mind is a unique optimistic yearning for the better.

A peaceful mind, one not changing with the environment.
Peace of mind is the fulfillment that comes from accomplishments, and the stability in the face of adversity.

A sincere mind, earnestness unchecked.
Sincerity is a mirror, reflecting our culture, our knowledge, our taste, our personality, our character, our poise, our upbringing, our innate qualities, etc. Without a sincere heart, it's futile even to find our own space in this world. Obviously, sincerity is a direct expression of inter-personal relation. At the same time, sincerity is what binds us into a coherent whole, underpinned by a sense of mutual trust. A sincere mind is a befitting goal the attainment of which is sure to define our moral compass.

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