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Between a Rock and a Buddha Place June 26, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Life Balance, Meditation, Mindfulness.

Tigger-BouncingSomeone once accused me of not being a Buddhist monk.

The accusation didn’t bother me since (1) I’m not Buddhist; (2) I’ve never aspired to Monkdom; and (3) I don’t care what others think of me.

If someone wants to waste time  judging me and my perceived spiritual short-comings, that’s their business.

Although the intended insult bounced off its mark, it did get me thinking . . .

Where am I on my spiritual path? 

After mindful consideration of that question, the answer floated up to me:

Between a rock and a Buddha place. 

Both sit in silent stillness.  Neither is impacted by stress and dis-ease.  Both are accepting of the environment around them.  Neither is angry, greedy, envious, or jealous.

But only one is fully awake and aware.


Wikipedia ~ Buddha (in Public Domain)

At this point, I’m probably closer to the rock than the Buddha place.  That’s OK.

Most Buddhas start out as rocks and emerge only after they chisel away everything that doesn’t look like a Buddha.

No rules.  Just write! 

Related posts:   We Travel Best When We Travel Light * Happiness: A Theory of Relativity



1. Debra - June 26, 2011

I am Buddhist, but not a monk. And I am what i m when I am.

But it seems an odd thing to say…’you are not a Buddhist monk’.

Nancy, I am happy you chose to use this statement for your benefit:)

not wanting to be a monk,
Debra 🙂

nrhatch - June 26, 2011

People do say the oddest things at times . . . expecting that their criticism and censure will cause us to change our behavior in order to please them.

I’d rather please myself. 😉

I think that you’ve raised an important point . . . instead of getting upset by angry words tossed in our path, we can use them to our advantage as we proceed on our way.

On the Spiritual Path, people who annoy us are our “teachers.” In time, people who can upset us become harder and harder to find.

2. gitikapartington - June 26, 2011

can I just ask you…are you on different path…is there a post-twice a-day-2011? You are prolific!

nrhatch - June 26, 2011

I’ve been posting at least once a day since February 2010 when I started SLTW . . . and the words keep flowing. I expect that the well of words may never dry up completely.

Early on, I posted 4 times a day . . . that seemed excessive since so many readers on SLTW follow other blogs.

Now, I try to post only when I have something to say . . . not just because I want to say something.

Thanks for calling me “prolific” . . . rather than “verbose.” 😉

3. Loreen Lee - June 26, 2011

Dear Time Out Box:
I didn’t become a Buddhist monk, either. I guess that’s why I’m in the Time Out Box! 🙂

nrhatch - June 26, 2011

Perhaps. 😉

4. Carl D'Agostino - June 26, 2011

Just spent time with daughter and 3 grand kids at the pool. Little lunch and apple juice. It was meditative and cleansing. Didn’t need no orange bath robe and a statue.

nrhatch - June 26, 2011

Children are wonderful meditative devices . . . they bring our attention back to THIS MOMENT and THIS ONE and THIS ONE. No robes required.

Maybe one day I’ll commission a chess set from you ~ with Buddha as both King and Queen . . . Yin and Yang. 😉

5. Paula Tohline Calhoun - June 26, 2011

That is about the strangest thing to say to someone that I have ever heard! Where on earth did s/he get the idea you professed to be a Buddhist monk? I think I would have laughed in his/her face!

It would be sort of like saying to a train conductor, “You are not a veterinarian!” 😀

nrhatch - June 26, 2011

Agreed! Maybe the “confusion” arose from my references to mindful meditation or the Dalai Lama.

I have adopted wisdom from any number of sources: Buddhism, Taoism, Wicca, Native American culture, etc.

No one group owns the truth. It is available to us all.

6. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide - June 26, 2011

That’s probably the lamest insult ever! Those robes aren’t even flattering.:)

nrhatch - June 26, 2011

Actually, if I ate all the great looking stuff you cook . . . I would need to trade in my shorts for one of those flowing robes! 😀

7. Julie - June 26, 2011

Your posts just keep getting better and better!

I’m closer to a rock place too. But glad to be there while I am.

nrhatch - June 26, 2011

Thanks, Julie! This post popped into my head this morning almost fully formed.

Just a bit of tinkering and . . . c’est finis! 😉

I’d been pondering people who set out to be “spiritual” in a paint-by-numbers way. First, they define “spirituality” as being, for example, loving, compassionate, kind, etc. Those chosen attributes become the “destination” ~ they want to be perceived by others as loving, compassionate, and kind (i.e., spiritual).

In contrast, people on a spiritual journey seek to access their authentic nature. They are not worried about reaching a set destination. They are focused on progress not perfection. They no longer compare themselves with others and are unconcerned with how they are perceived by others. The only yardstick they use is an internal one.

They realize that they must first be a rock . . . before they can be a Buddha.

8. colonialist - June 26, 2011

Neither appeals to me. Rocks have a boring time unless thrown. They also get trodden on. Then, I get bored very quickly when contemplating my navel. It isn’t a vey interesting one.

nrhatch - June 26, 2011

I expect that one would get bored in navel contemplation . . . maybe naval contemplation would be more enticing? 😉

9. clarbojahn - June 26, 2011

In what way are people who annoy us our teachers? In the sense that we project? What do you see as the reason? Because they make us look at ourselves? Just curious.

nrhatch - June 26, 2011

In the same way that storms make sailors more proficient at keeping the boat on a steady keel.

If we only sail in smooth waters, it’s difficult to gauge our progress.

As soon as someone “rocks our boat,” we get to test how quickly we return to a place of equilibrium.

10. souldipper - June 26, 2011

Oh I get it! That person thought you were collecting alms and you were selling bowls! No? Then it’s the bare feet! 😀

nrhatch - June 26, 2011

You made me laugh! Bare feet and my Three Bowls Cookbook.

11. Tilly Bud - June 27, 2011

What a strange thing to be accused of. Surely not by a Buddhist? That’s not their style.

nrhatch - June 27, 2011

No, not by a Buddhist.

In their eyes, I was not “loving enough, compassionate enough, or kind enough” to meet their paint-by-numbers approach to Spirituality ~ as such, I did NOT reach the spiritual stature of a Buddhist monk.

That’s cool. When we accept ourselves as and where we are . . . we have more energy to become.

12. eof737 - June 27, 2011

I have an affinity for the Buddhist path and as a Reiki practitioner, it resonates deep within… I wonder what the person meant by accusing you of not being a monk? 🙂

nrhatch - June 27, 2011

Buddhist practices resonate with me as well. I have a high regard for the teachings of the Dalai Lama (and other Buddhists).

I suspect the accusation meant that I was not “loving enough, kind enough, or compassionate enough” to meet their paint-by-numbers approach to Spirituality. 😀

13. Finding Happiness the Epictetus Way #6 « Ritu’s Weblog - September 13, 2011

[…] Between a Rock and a Buddha Place (nrhatch.wordpress.com) […]

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