As I write up descriptions for each doll to be sold via my online site I travel into the realms of fear. Someone from a news organization wants to interview me. Oh boy, interviewing a crip for human interest? My past experience has led me to believe there is No Such Thing as "off the record" and that I must be Very careful of everything I say. In the past encounters with the news media have led to all kinds of squirrrely phone calls, strangers inviting me to dinner, people wanting to "save me" etc.
In Buddhism there are believed to be beings who choose to hang around, even after they have become enlightened. My understanding of enlightenment is living completely Without the "poisons of the mind" such as craving, hatred or revulsion, greed, arrogance or pride, and envy. Such beings live happy and free to act, not constrained by fears and insecurities steming from these mental poisons. They are called Bodhisattvas. They have made physical and spiritual commitments to hang around living beings like me who are not enlightened, until we all get there.
I listened to a taped seminar in which a Hindu practice was described where a person chanted the names of God or Gods for half an hour each day. The idea is to clear one's own negativity and call benefit for all beings into one's life.
Cherokees, according to Dhyani Ywahoo's book "Voices of Our Ancestors" believe that each of the five vowels, pronounced in the "intternational way" (ah, ay, ee as in see for the letter i, oh, and oo as the U in stucent) corresponds to an organ system in the human body.
The seminar I listened to by Carolyn Myss and Dr. Wayne Dyre, (forgive my poor spelling please, I only Heard these names, I did not read them in Braille) suggested chanting the name of God or Gods which had the sound of "ah" in them. This is a Hindu practice.
In Cherokee understanding the sound of "ah" has to do with the throat, the speech center and love, the ability to express love for self and others.
Though the Bodhisattvas of Buddhism do not claim to be gods and neither did the Historical Buddha, I decided to try chanting the names of Bodhisattvas.
I have known for a long time that sound and music had a special power. It seems to connect to things beyond the here and now physical world. It crosses barriers.
So far my experiment seems to be helping me stay calm or more calm in the face of fear, be more patient with others, and I've paired it with a question asked by Carolyn Myss, "What would I do now if I had courage?" I am trying to do those things without courage, believing that the feeling of courage will come when I need it. And if it doesn't, I go on anyway.
The hardest thing for me to do in this world is trust anyone or anything. It took having cancer and chemotherapy for me to learn that Ann really Did love me. We had known one another since 1981 and this hppened in 2001.
So my chanting practice and asking myself this question then acting on it is an attempt to trust life. It is something more basic than believing that everything will be all right, clearly, that is often Not the case. It is a deeper thing that I have no words for.
But it should be an interesting ride.