And I learned what is obvious to a child.
That life is simply a collection of little lives,
each lived one day at a time.
That each day should be spent finding beauty in flowers
and poetry and talking to animals.
That a day spent with dreaming and sunsets
and refreshing breezes cannot be bettered.
But most of all, I learned that life
is about sitting on benches next to ancient creeks
with my hand on her knee and sometimes,
on good days, for falling in love.
Never allow someone to be your priority while allowing yourself to be their option.
I’m nostalgic for the hands which never intertwined and the cheeks never blushing and feelings never understood. but mostly for the love we never shared. I’ve taken up falling in love with rivers and mountains and other beautiful things because we can never find each other. I catch you in yesterdays sunlight and in the train fares I can’t afford. you’re sleeping without me and my dreams have exploded with the words written about you hidden underneath my bed.
Sometimes I can hear my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I’m not living.
70 year-old Buddhist monk Hua Chi has been praying in the same spot at his temple in Tongren, China for over 20 years. His footprints, which are up to 1.2 inches deep in some areas, are the result of performing his prayers up to 3000 times a day. Now that he is 70, he says that he has greatly reduced his quantity of prayers to 1,000 times each day.
The footprints have become a source of inspiration to younger monks at the temple. “Every day I come here and every day I look at the piece of wood, and it has inspired me to continue to make the footprints myself,” Genden Darji, a 29 year-old monk in the monastery, notes.
I don’t know if I continue, even today, always liking myself. But what I learned to do many years ago was to forgive myself. It is very important for every human being to forgive herself or himself because if you live, you will make mistakes—it is inevitable. But once you do and you see the mistake, then you forgive yourself and say, ‘Well, if I’d known better I’d have done better,’ that’s all. So you say to people who you think you may have injured, ‘I’m sorry,’ and then you say to yourself, ‘I’m sorry.’ If we all hold on to the mistake, we can’t see our own glory in the mirror because we have the mistake between our faces and the mirror; we can’t see what we’re capable of being. You can ask forgiveness of others, but in the end the real forgiveness is in one’s own self.