Are there any habits in your life that fuel agitation? A fire will go out when it is not fed by grass and wood, and a glass of water will become still when it is set down. We can notice if our habits promote agitation, and then take opportunities to quiet the mind rather than perpetuate unrest.
To experience peace, we need to have the ability to calm ourselves, and pacify the agitation that sometimes arises in our hearts. Notice the moments when you feel disturbed, and explore simple ways of nurturing calmness. You might draw in a long, slow, deep breath; you might feel your feet on the ground; you might tune into the surrounding sounds of birds or traffic; you might expand your awareness to include the whole room; you might allow a half smile to emerge; you might just pause to realize that you are alive right now, and just let go of worry because we know that death can come at anytime. There are many ways of inclining the mind toward ease, quietude, acceptance, and tranquility.
Walking the Path Course participants are encouraged to work with calmness this month (July-August). Please notice times when you are easily agitated, and explore various ways of calming yourself. Share your insights with your Dhamma Buddy through a phone call or in-person discussion.
The reading assignment to prepare for our meeting in August is chapter 7, of The Art of Disappearing, by Ajahn Brahm.