Sustaining Practice

One of the ways we honor our spiritual tradition is in how we sustain our practice over time. If we are sincerely interested in awakening to the truth mirrored to us by our lineage teachers, we practice what they suggest. This is always according to our capability. But I have found that most people are more capable than they think. Who is it that assesses our capability?

Our ego identity is in charge of most things relating to our perceived capacity to act in any given moment. We are a mass of approval issues, idealistic thinking, and performance anxiety. Letting go go those things makes us more capable in all venues of life. We often do not realize how our decisions stem from the fear that we cannot measure up to some imagined ideal. This makes the ego very happy and keeps us from getting anywhere in our spiritual practice.

Sustaining our practice sustains us. It nourishes the basis of our existence which is none other that taking birth with infinite possible lives. If we meet and recognize the Dharma in one of those lives we are indeed quite fortunate. Why would we not practice? Through embodiment of the teachings, we have an opportunity to help ease the suffering of ourself and others through our dedication to awakening.

That dedication is in every moment. Practice is in every moment. It is daily sustenance. This is why our dedication prayers include the aspiration, “May I meet the Dharma immediately after taking birth and have the freedom to practice it properly. Having pleased the holy Lama, may I practice Dharma day and night.” Now, take a deep breath, and remember that aspiration.

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