But last night while talking to a friend, I heard myself saying that despite all my progress on the path, perhaps there remained a slight undercurrent of dissatisfaction. That my life felt mostly ordinary, divorced from the magic that I knew was present in everyday life. Even when I was present, in the sense of my mind not being somewhere else, I didn’t feel fully present because there remained this last barrier. I wasn’t getting upset, frustrated, agitated or any of those samsaric feelings, I know things are the way they are because it’s just the way it is, nothing in the world offends, but I wasn’t experiencing a lightness of spirit.
When I meditated the next morning, I had a “Duh!” moment. (This is really embarrassing to admit.) “Ordinary” is nothing but another label. My life is not ordinary. It just is. In fact, ordinary = not ordinary. While most people’s lives seem to them ordinary, every life is actually unique; one could say that the true norm of life is its non-ordinariness. Even in this mass culture of ours with its attribute of conformity, everyone comes to each moment with his or her own particular blend of experiences and nature.
With that revelation, the veil was lifted and everything within and around me was alive … the workings of my body, the objects around me and all the work by so many people that had gone into their production as well as the miracle of nature that provided the raw material for the objects.
It’s not that I haven’t had such moments in the past when I’ve truly been present, but those moments were typically fleeting. In the days since this meditation, however, wherever I walked the things around me were palpable. And the people were real; I saw them as persons, unique, a product of their experiences. Many had a positive aura despite the suffering that I knew was universal and thus also within them, and I admired their ability to have positive energy. Many had an aura of anger and negativity and yet I knew that within each person there was warmth to be found.
And yes, I’ve felt a slight smile on my face. And so people reacted to me differently. Several smiled. When I stood next to someone, or sat down next to someone on the bus, strangers often talked to me. (Not my usual experience.)
So remember, if you ever feel your life is ordinary, it is not. That is just a label your mind puts on it because it wants your life to be something that it is not. Your life is in fact something unique to yourself. Realize that, be present, love yourself, have compassion for yourself, and experience the magic in yourself and the world around you.