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Lions Roar : March 2019
In kintsugi, the reality of brokenness represents an opportunity for the trans- formation of consciousness. What a won- derful metaphor for our lives. During the years while my son was in school, I was continually called upon to let go of my idea of what his and our reality should be. And on the other hand, we also had to be careful not to give up or deny the truth of our challenges. It was not an option to say that we were in a hopeless mess and leave it at that. What to do? This kintsugi art of golden repair requires, first of all, a clear-eyed seeing of what is. All the fabricated stories about how impossible the situation is, or how our devastations might be assigned, categorized, or clung to—all are brushed away. A space is made clear for repair. From that place, we can find the pieces through inquiry, as I did when I managed to finally ask my son, “Are you suffering?” Once found, the pieces can be assembled. Present moment reality, along with the love and compassion we bear for it, pro- vides the glue. The gold dust is, I suspect, the wonder of being so unmistakably alive. Recently I met up with my son for lunch and we were talking over some old times. I asked if he remembered that inci- dent from high school, twenty years ago, when I told him that he was going to end up as a truck driver if he didn’t start doing his homework. He didn’t remember it, and laughed when I described how ashamed I was of my reactive, dualistic behavior then. But then, somewhat sheepishly, my son smiled and said that he and his part- ner were now struggling with their son, my beloved ten-year-old grandson, who had begun to develop a stubborn aver- sion to doing his homework, just like his equally beloved father. And so it goes, the fragile, spectacular process of taking up what is broken and making repairs begins all over again. Just imagine the fine art of kintsugi extended so thoroughly throughout time and space, tenderly addressing every conceiv- able broken place until all of it is sheer gold. May it be so. ♦ Residential Meditation Retreat with Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche Author of The Joy of Living and Joyful Wisdom June2–7,2019 University of St. Thomas Saint Paul, Minnesota Open to all, including beginning meditators. For more information visit tergar.org/retreat EXPLORE AWARENESS, COMPASSION, AND WISDOM Tergar Meditation Community supports individuals, practice groups, and meditation communities around the world in learning to live with awareness, compassion, and wisdom. Grounded in the Tibetan Buddhist lineage of our guiding teacher Mingyur Rinpoche, our online and in-person programs are accessible to people of all cultures and faiths and support a lifelong path toward the application of these principles in everyday life. firstname.lastname@example.org | tergar.org LION’S ROAR | MARCH 2019 22