“Now it was time to follow the old Zen lesson and let go with both hands. Life is suffering, and the cause of suffering is desire, so the Buddhists say. You can’t stop the desires, memories, the thoughts and the feelings, the teaching went, but you didn’t have to grasp them and hang onto them to torture yourself; you could simply let them go, let them float away like balloons or bubbles.”
The truly marvelous thing about reading is the way inspiration and insight pops up in the oddest places. I was clicking along in my reading of Friend of the Devil, Peter Robinson’s latest Inspector Banks mystery, when this passage literally jumped off the page and bonked me on my (still stuffy) head. “Let go with both hands,” DI Annie Cabot reminds herself, and send those persistent nagging thoughts and desires into the ether.
It occurred to me that my mind is just as congested as my respiratory system, clogged with the detritus of unfullilled ambitions, fears about the future, and indecision about which way to turn. If it were only possible to clear my thoughts of these toxic feelings, to release them from my psyche and send them floating away into the sky, then surely my breath would flow easily and freely and there would be a corner of my heart for peaceful, positive thoughts to settle in and grow.
Inspiration – to fill with breath. It can come from anywhere, but for me, it often comes from a book.
Now tell me, have you ever been surprised by inspiration from a book?