It’s the kind of thing we hear all the time from someone who is repeating one of those “wiseguy” sayings we are always reading and hearing about, it goes something like this: “Walk a mile in someone else’s shoes before you judge them.” Which is a pretty spiffy saying and makes perfect sense.
But I often ask people if they have the awareness to have walked a mile in their own shoes? I mean if you’re living out of conditioning you won’t be able to have the compassion to put yourself in another’s frame of reference. You can talk all day about homelessness, poverty, race, religion, or politics, but if you aren’t aware of how your conditioning effects your position what do you think you’re accomplishing?
Any perspective you have will need to start with being aware of your own state and position. If not you are coming to conclusions from conditioning. That’s only going to get you conditioned ego based conclusions. Not very helpful.
You don’t have to join a Zen monastery to enable being here. Just be aware of breath and the body. Being in proximity of the body means that you’re here, being inside the mind means your in conditioning. So breathe and walk that mile.
On another note. I will be posting, when I get back from retreat some, info about Melissa LaFontaine’s book below. It will be the second post about books. I think the book is excellent. We may do the first audioblog a bit later as soon as I figure out how to do that long distance.
Melissa LaFontaine has written a book that I’ll be posting about in a few weeks. It’s called “The LIghtworkers Guide to Homelessness.” https://www.amazon.com/Lightworkers-Guide-Homelessness-Memoir/dp/1540665178/ It’s an inside look to that experience. If you drop all reference points and pre-conclusions you will gain some valuable perspective. Melissa’s Blog
One another note: I will be gone for a week and a half on silent retreats. I do this every year. I will be with Cheri Huber and Ashwinni Narayanan in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Then off to climb the Smokies for three days. I’m excited! I will try to stay updated when not in silence.