I shared this story during my recent meditation retreat with Bali Usada.
I am not the best meditator I know (whatever “best” in this sense might mean). I am not the most diligent, nor am I the most focused. I don’t really have any so-called miraculous spiritual experiences during meditation that I can share with you. I don’t have any miracle stories to tell about my meditation.
My miracle, is my life. Or rather, my life itself is a miracle to me.
My friends in the previous office gave me a mug as a farewell gift some years ago. The mug has this writing: “My miracle is when I am thirsty, I drink; When I am hungry, I eat.” My friend said I quoted the sentence once to her. I wouldn’t remember.
But it is so true. It is a miracle for me to have that instinct even for the very ‘basic’ things in life, to eat when I am hungry, to drink when I am thirsty. It is also a miracle that I can eat when I am hungry; that I can drink when I am thirsty.
And if I step back a bit to look at the life that I have walked through all these years, I am in awe. I cannot possibly have done what I have done myself using only my own strength. It is truly, simply a miracle.
It is a miracle for me to be able to be what I am today. To shift from what I have been years ago, to become what I am today. Who knows what can and what will happen next?
Friends who have been with me for years, perhaps more than 15 years, will testify how much I have changed (and how yet some parts of me remain the same). How I have become how I am today is beyond me. Again, I could not possibly have done it myself.
The education that I have been put through, most explicit in the last seven years, are nothing but of His grace. In the retreat, I attributed the changes in me to my meditation practice. It has been an important part of the education, although obviously not the only one.
I cannot remember for the life of me when and how I became interested in meditation. Perhaps that is not important. For the last years, however, I have only been focusing on two ‘schools’, Bali Usada and Self Awareness Meditation. I try as best as I can to do the practice regularly.
It is amazing how, a 30-45 minute regular practice can affect your life. In meditation, you are invited to witness you and your surrounding, to let go and let be, to simply witness and appreciate, without wanting to change anything. The task, was simply to observe with loving-kindness, to appreciate, and to know that everything that has condition changes.
And before you know it, you are beginning to apply it to your everyday life. You simply, kindly observe, appreciate, and know that everything that has condition change. Then as if suddenly, you become kinder to your surrounding and most importantly to yourself.
I suppose this is true with any kind of practice you do: prayer, meditation, yoga, social activities, writing from the heart, teaching, parenthood, taking up hobbies, doing things that you love, etc. And also with any kind of less-conscious habits, which may be counter-productive. Please take good care.
But however I have been and whatever has happened in life, whether we call it good times or tougher times, happiness or otherwise, it is what have shaped me to be how I am today. They were all necessary and nothing is a waste.
I have nothing but gratitude and awe for all the miracles in my life. And that’s every single second of my life.
post script: A verse from Ar-Rahmaan (Quran Surah 55) came to me earlier today: fabi-ayyi aalaa-i rabbikumaa tukadzdzibaa – Then which of your Sustainer’s blessings will you deny?