Tag Archives: metaphor

Happiness, Anger and Metaphor

Passengers in back of pick up truck
Along for the ride

I have this wonderful, wise qigong friend, Francie. She says the greatest things. She wrote a few days ago on Facebook –

“I choose happiness every time. Once upon a time I wouldn’t or couldn’t. How am I able to choose happiness in the midst of all that happens to me and others? For me, a steady Sheng Zhen practice has helped. Meditation has helped. My mind is stiller and can see more clearly the transitory and the permanent, which is change. It’s impossible really to say how this happened, and it doesn’t mean that I don’t have feelings of sadness, anger, fear . . . these feelings just don’t rule me anymore. They are more like companions along for the ride.”

I’m not quite there yet but I’m on my way and frequently those bad feelings are just along for the ride.

She has a way with words.

As I have noted on this blog before, I am a fan of metaphor.

Water as Metaphor

Calm Waters in Surrey Maine

 

I feel inspired to write a bit about water. I might even say compelled. It was on my blog list in a vague way, but circumstances kept bringing the theme to the top. I seem attracted to water metaphors in picking quotes to inspire me in my blog.

My second blog post, Bad at Meditation, referred to thoughts that interrupt meditation as  jetsam on the river. In preparing the most recent photo challenge blog, Home is…, I realized that I think of water as home or at least a large part of home. When I refer to water I tend to refer to it in a natural form – ocean, river, pond. When I practice qigong the movements frequently flow like I am in the water or I am water.

Recently, I read an article that talked about being like water. It suggested being like water to adapt to our environment just as water takes the shape of the vessel it is in. I like the “be like water” idea but I’m not as attracted to the idea of taking the shape of the vessel. I do understand the meaning but it doesn’t resonate with me.

I prefer this quote from a Sheng Zhen booklet Messages of Love. The poem is entitled Stilling the Mind. My favorite part is

Do not keep agitating

The waters of your mind.

Do not hold what you do

Dropping it over and over

Into the clear waters of your mind

Endlessly making ripples

 

Let go of what you do

Let it go like a pebble dropping, sinking

To the bottom of the lake.

If you do not chase it

If you do not plunge in after it

The ripples of it’s passing

Will once again return to stillness.

 

This is the kind of metaphor that works for me.  “The ripples of it’s passing/Will once again return to stillness”  is so clear to me.  Different metaphors resonate with different people.  Tell me the ones that resonate with you.

LINKS:

Stilling the Mind (complete poem)

The article that refers to water taking the shape of the vessel, Increasing Happiness with Tai Chi and Qigong, by Jeff Simonton,  is from Yang Sheng Magazine, a big favorite of mine.  Sometimes it is very technical but frequently just plain practical.

H2O Water and Five Elements post 2/2/13

 

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