Sunday, December 21, 2014

Winter Solstice 2014

Merry Yule and a Happy Winter Solstice to All!
On this, the longest night of the year, or the shortest day, depending on how you prefer to look at it, we will soon be greeted with the gradual 'return' of more and more light.
I am a tad late with this post, but there are good reasons for the delay.
In 2006, I formed a relationship with a man that also brought two children - a human child and a canine child.
We lost the human child a few years ago after a long struggle.
On December 19, 2014, we lost our canine child after a long struggle with degenerative spinal myelopathy.
I tried to not become "attached".
I tried to resist tender feelings and love.
I tried to stay at a distance.
All of my efforts were futile.
As I sit here, trying to type, my heart actually hurts.
In the Kadampa tradition, I am being taught that love is not supposed to hurt - that attachment is the pain maker.
Well, I am now experiencing that which I sought to balm by attempting 'detachment'.
This loss hurts like hell.
No matter how many beings that you love and lose - each 'separation' is painful, often unbearably so.
One may even surmise that with all of the losses incurred in this life, that they would get easier to bear with more experience.
My Friend, I believe that my pain may actually be increasing with such 'experience' - especially as I come to know my own mortality. A fragile mortality magnified by caring for the sick, the suffering and the dying.
On that note, I am going to end this post.
Apologies, but I am experiencing the kind of grief that disturbs my concentration and attention.
I still must believe that love is worth every tear shed. 
I still must believe that love is the only thing that holds meaning in this journey called life. 
I still must believe that every being that undertakes this journey seeks love.
That said, I will leave you with an excerpt of an old prayer that is typically dedicated to the Winter Solstice and seems especially suited to this occasion.

"I am the circle of rebirth.
I ask no sacrifice, but do bow,
No other law but love I know,
By naught but love may I be known.
All things living are mine own,
From me they come, to me they go."

December 4, 2001 - December 19, 2014
Photo courtesy of Chandra Eswaran