So last night, the Family and I watched the movie Groundhog Day starring Bill Murray.
Beside being an entertaining movie, and filmed locally here in Woodstock Illinois, it is also a great Buddhist message.
Bill Murray’s’ character keeps waking up every day only to relive the same day over and over again.
As hard as he struggles to control the situation and manipulate his circumstances, the results are just more suffering. Day after day after day.
It is only when he finally accepts things as they are, and embraces it, that he finally achieves bliss.
I see all of us struggle with each day in very much the same way. We struggle over and over trying to control things, to manipulate our lives and others into how we would like life to be.
But we wake up the next morning and find ourselves reliving the same old circumstances again and again.
As much fun as it was to watch Bill Murray go through this, I don’t find it quite as amusing in my own life. It’s time to accept things the way they are.
The way I am practicing to accomplish this is through mindfulness. I have to catch myself quite often throughout the day. It sneaks up on me constantly.
Someone or some thing is not the way I would like it, and I instinctively react by trying to do something to change it. To make it the way I think it should be.
If you are sad, I want to make you happy. If you are sick, I want to make you well. If you are tired, I want you to rest. Whew, I’m already exhausted!
But the reality is, I cannot make you well, or happy or rested. I can be compassionate and loving and thoughtful. But I cannot control or change anything. And when I accept this, I relax and I’m at peace.
When I am relaxed and at peace I find that not only am I happier, but I feel I have so much more love to give. I am open to myself and open to others.
So hopefully I can find bliss myself and stop experiencing Groundhog Day.
I guess if I see my shadow, it means 6 more weeks of suffering! ;-)
May you be well, happy and peaceful.