Last night, while I was emptying my kitchen to redo thirty-year-old contact paper, I came across this book. It was one of my absolute favorites after James died. I looked at the meditation for yesterday, remembering how much I struggled to accept its wisdom in my early stages of grief, and marveling at how much I respect it now:
"It is a world we do not want to enter, a world for which we have no hunger. We would turn from it if we could. Yet we find ourselves in it. And our company is a multitude.
There is a story of a woman who came to the Buddha seeking help after the death of her child and was told that, for healing, she need only find a mustard seed from a household that had never known sorrow. According to the story, she traveled over all the world in vain, never finding such a household, but found instead-understanding, compassion, friendship, and truth.
The world of desolation is a world that calls many of us. There is no going around it. There is only going through it, if we are to find healing and new life."
Nothing is to be gained by turning away from the truth. When the circumstances of my life are grim, I will face the grimness, learn what it has to teach me, and walk on through.