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Melli O'Brien



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What’s in the Way Is the Way

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Hi, and welcome to your Daily Mindfulness.

So today I'm going to tell you

a story about wild chickens.

So this story comes from the

meditation teacher, Larry Rosenberg

and his experience of meditating

in the forest of Thailand.

So here's the story.

So after many years he spent as

a Zen monk in Korea, he goes on

this journey to Thailand and to

go on these extended retreat.

But what he didn't realize is that he also

took with him on his journey to Thailand,

a whole bunch of expectations about what

his experience was going to be like there.

So he arrived at his assigned lodging

and he was going to be in this small

meditation hut in the forest each day

with an attendant bringing him food.

So there he was at this retreat

where he came to cultivate

inner peace in a serene forest.

And it turns out that the whole

forest was overrun by screeching,

scratching, wild chickens.

Not what he was expecting

for a meditation retreat.

Distressed and disappointed, he

was confronted by his own mind.

How am I supposed to be at peace

with all of this noise around me?

My retreat is ruined.

I came all the way for this?

But after enduring his own annoyance and

frustration and dismayed day after day,

he finally realized that he had a choice.

He may not be able to control all

those wild chickens, but he could

control his response to them.

He could keep resisting the

chickens or he could accept them.

And as he chose to accept the wild

chickens and just let them be,

all the negativity and annoyance

in him melted away and he found

peace in the middle of it all.

Now like Larry, we're all going

to have times when the reality

of our lives contains wild

chickens of one kind or another.

Things are going to arise that

are painful, annoying, unpleasant.

Things we can't control.

And as they arise, it's wise to

remember that we do have a choice

in how we handle the situation.

We can resist, or we can accept.

We can wage war with life,

or we can wage peace.

We you make ourselves miserable and

agitated about what's happening, or

we can find peace and even joy amongst

the wild chickens of our lives.

So if we can set aside our ideas of

how we think life should or shouldn't

be, relax our agendas and just

accept life as it is, we're going

to find greater degrees of peace and

equanimity in the middle of it all.

So as always thank you for your

practice and foryour presence here.

And let's just take a moment now to

settle in for today's meditation.

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