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Lions Roar : January 2015
things are good, you will feel that way only when things are good. When things are difficult, you will not be able to experi- ence the qualities you are trying to cultivate. Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche has also commented on this slogan, saying, “Although your external circumstances may vary, your practice should not be dependent on that.” So please do not think of your meditation practice as something that hap- pens for a few minutes here and there throughout your day, but as something that you can continuously engage in, especially when times get tough. the reason we try to bring our meditation practice and our livelihood together is not to attain great fame but because it is a way to live our life with meaning. If you go about your work— or your medi- tation—hoping that some- one will say how accom- plished you are, you will end up disappointed. Instead, relax your expectations. If you can do that, then when someone does praise you for your good work, you will likely feel delighted. Pema Chödrön has commented on this slogan, saying, “We can thank others, but we should give up all hope of getting thanked back. Simply keep the door open without expectations.” In other words, just because we shouldn’t expect applause does not mean we should not applaud others. Taking delight in others’ good work is a gift to ourselves, as well as an act of kindness to the object of our admiration. Similarly, if you engage in your work or your practice with enthusiasm, mindfulness, and spaciousness, not only will you become more efficient, but you will enjoy it much more. That is its own reward. The path of exploring the dharma is a lifelong one. The idea of determining who you want to be when you grow up is a con- stantly changing process, as I doubt any of us truly ever feels we have, officially, “grown up.” We are forever growing, and, as a result, we must continu- ously return to these fundamental teachings on discovering our evolving intention, deepening trust in our basic goodness, becoming inquisitive about our life and livelihood, and engag- ing our speech and activity in a spacious and mindful manner. If we train in these basic tasks, we will see success in our work and live a life that is meaningful and in line with who we want tobe.♦ is a way to live our life with meaning. If you go about your work— or your medi- tation—hoping that some- one will say how accom- plished you are, you will end up disappointed. loDRo RinZleR is the author of four books, including The Buddha Walks into a Bar: A Guide to Life for a New Generation. He writes from his apartment in New York City, which he shares with his dog, Tillie, and his cat, Justin Bieber. shambhala sun january 2015 34