Recently I have been putting more attention on the brahmaviharas. Along with this refocusing of my practice on the Four Immeasurables, I have also been doing my best to view the myriad, dukkha producing experiences of daily life as opportunities to practice for which I should be grateful. Why the gratitude and appreciation for stress and minor sufferings? Simply because in my present state as a human I am able to use them as stepping stones along the path whereas if I were born as an animal, hungry ghost or denizen of one of the narakas I would be far too deluded or in too much pain to do anything skilful. On the other hand, as Ajahn Anan has said, devas don’t generally have the chance to practice the Dhamma in the same way because much of the dukkha we experience in the form of minor discomforts just doesn’t exist for them until right before their millennial life span is ending.
Okay, so what does this have to do with parking? Well, parking, as you may know, has a special place in my heart and causes me more stress than I believe it should but that is where I find myself. Anyway, the other day we went to Rockaway Beach so my son could take some surfing lessons. We got there early but it didn’t matter because they’re was no parking to be found anywhere. I ended up circling around a 30 block radius for almost an hour but, because I was able to keep my wits about me, I didn’t add onto the dukkha that was already there and freak or as i normally would. What’s more when someone found a space I was prescient enough to (try to) rejoice in their good fortune rather than begrudging them their luck. It may not seem like much but to me it was and is a major victory over the forces of aversion and egotism.
Life seems so much easier when lived with heedfulness and in accord with the Dhamma. May I always remember this and meet ever with the Dhamma until Liberation.