Floral Notes and Bardo: Soothing Shifts

Pesky flies and mice of mind, rich tea, blazing, devastating, haunting sunrise, depression — a dark patch within splendor.  Summer falling away, moaning, the crisp speckles of autumn appearing like feather-touch in the leaves, the aspens, fall.

Soothing few, after far too many.

Group laughter, swaying conversation, intimate, around the picnic table last night.  A home run meal turned out by Adam and the crew — veggie burgers, potato wedges, Brussels sprouts, fish for the fish-eaters, big old acorn squash, hummus on the salad bar, crumbled tofu, and… oh, big, huge, warm, gooey brownies.  I gathered a heaping plate for the table and we chowed down.

So drastically different, all of a sudden.  And a nice big shipment of Dong Ding tea arrived in the mail yesterday.  Quite good!

Heather and I made reservations to stay at a sheep-farm-winery in a cute little room previously used for farm workers.  Turns out the annual Harvest Festival will be taking place that weekend in some small valley a few hundred miles away from this one.

Soothing shifts.  Of course, the mice and flies continue to scratch and buzz at my fragile fortress doors, but even the pest-friends seem more manageable.  More obvious that they are teachers and that I can dance with them — like my own confused projections of mind — which they are.  Sometimes dissolve, remove, other times surrender.  Sometimes pounce, sometimes wait, sometimes offer myself for someone else’s feast.

Oh my goodness… shifting. As Acharya Lyon famously said:

“The seasons are not theoretical here. You live them.”

— September 16, 2015

Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a regular feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of living as part of Shambhala Mountain Center.


PortraitTravis Newbill is a writer, musician, and aspirant on the path of meditation.  He currently resides at Shambhala Mountain Center, where he serves in the roles of Marketing Associate and Shambhala Guide — a preliminary teaching position.  Follow Travis on twitter: @travisnewbill