On really diving in…

Here’s what’s alive in me about my going to Plum Village tomorrow.

I’m wondering what place this practice has in my life right now. Ever since an introduction week with Centrum voor Tantra a few weeks ago, I feel deeply motivated to dive more into tantra and integrate it in my life. It includes the body into the spiritual practice, something I am oh so enthusiastic about. The body and breath as gateways or instruments to spirit. Integration of heaven and earth, silence and celebration, solitude and togetherness… This focus on breath- and bodywork as well as inclusiveness towards sexuality and intimicy are aspects that I miss in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh. Of course, it’s a whole different setting you could say. It’s a monastery. And yes, it still has a lot to offer; A strong community and spiritual practice that has proven healthy and nourishing to me; An inspiring practice of engaged buddhism (i.g. with respect to peace work or environmentalism) that places the practice into the broader situation on planet earth.

Moreover, I notice this recurring desire to ‘really dive into’ something. I’ve heard and felt this before. And time and again, somehow this intention to really focus on that one thing often ends up in doing also that, but also a lot of other great stuff that comes up. I have great respect for people who really dive into something. Who have a hobby that they are dedicated to, or a job, or a practice. I’m wondering, what is my dedication? Living life fully?

How do I love myself (and subsequently others) unconditionally?

A recurring question, so much learned already, yet so much more to learn. It asks my attention these days and I’m open to look at it.

How do I integrate love and work?

Or in terms of Plum Village maybe mindfulness and work. So how can I integrate the practice with work, also when it is not fun or when it is challenging? I’ll volunteer in the kitchen, so I suppose there will be enough opportunities to learn.

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