The Wisdom of Two Open Palms
July 11, 2012
Imagine two hands reaching up to the sky, palms open. One hand is receiving while the other is letting go. It looks as though they are both doing the same thing, but they are not.
Being open to receiving good things in your life requires a heart and mind willing to accept them. Being open to letting go at the very same time means you do not try to control the outcome, duration or quality of the gift you will receive. It’s an extremely Zen concept to let all things be as they are while also being witness, and participant, in their progress.
As I continue to read Buddha’s Brain, I have become aware of an important distinction between craving and desire. Craving is a level of neediness that leaves you forever unfulfilled while desire is an intention that will either be fulfilled or not. The key here is not to be attached to the outcome either way. You desire something, but whether it comes to pass or not is another thing altogether (for all of you reading this, I desire a major book contract for a new idea that’s burning in my own brain, but should it not come to pass, I will find other avenues to lend it expression).
Chocolate is something we crave. Wealth is something we desire. But if we crave wealth, we may end up very unhappy people. When is enough really enough? When it comes to money, some would say you can never have enough. But if you come from a perspective of abundance, whatever you have is already more than enough. And with that attitude of abundance, you may find your desires are fulfilled beyond your wildest dreams.
Relationships can be like that. Living in an abundant space of gratitude for the friends and loved ones you do have brings a whole lot more joy than wishing you had more friends (or worse, different ones altogether!). And that brings me back to the open palms ~ if you close your hand to make a fist, you will only eliminate the possibility of more light, love and beauty to come into your life. If you open your hand to show your palm, you may also risk losing what you have. But my guess is the only thing you will really risk losing is the fear that kept your hand closed in the first place.
Raise them up to the sky, people. There is wisdom in the palms of your hands.