I would like to share about mindfulness, love, and action.
Some years ago I was working in hotel as housekeeper. My job required me to clean rooms in hotel. Basically it is like normal cleaning everybody doing at home. Just this one was a job. And it was merely physical job. It is a movement of body and some coordination from mind, what to do and what not to do, and how to do that.
When I mastered my cleaning skills, my mind was bored a bit, because everything that I saw at work was cleaning, cleaning, cleaning.
At first it was excitement to master cleaning skills, to apply myself in a beautiful way, even in such conditions, change my attitude towards dirtiness, to see it differently. I mastered cleaning skills, what else I might to do? I split somehow, basic mind was watching over cleaning process and other part of mind was thinking…well, I wondered a bit, writing some philosophical tracts in my mind, and I become not interested in this too. So, it wasn’t any way to escape from being housekeeper, cleaning, and some random thoughts in mind. Daily prison, what can experience a person at work. May be just at physical work, and not so at mind work, I don’t know. It is not what I would like to tell you.
After all these trials, I come up to the question, what will make me happy here & now? In all these circumstances, conditions, what within myself and around me at that job can make me happy? I question myself, what’s the right way to be right, right here & right now? What’s the way to be? How can I be like that?
I question not just myself, but I also question others, by explaining my situation and by stating my question. One time I spoke with my mother, and somehow, we went to that time when she was young, and she was cleaning dishes at the kitchen at her home, and her father (my grandfather) told her
“Clean dishes with love”
And as soon as my mother told me that, I got a clue, that I need to do my job with love. And I started to train myself, to do my job with love. As I worked as housekeeper at hotel, so I train myself to clean with love. It was a small clue, but it brought a big challenge.
As I started practicing in that way, there were other questions that come up, do I need to feel it? Does it go with touch (cleaning)? Where should my mind be? How should my body be? What is the perfection of this? How is it ?
I gave it lots of tries. It was like a framework, those causes and conditions – which in this case were my work. It was a framework for my practice. Don’t worry, I already perfected my cleaning skills, and there was no negative feedback from my supervisor. I did my job well and on time, and also helped others, who were working with me. So, basically I just needed to bring enlightenment to workplace. And that element of enlightenment was love in action.
I practiced, and practiced, and practiced, and in one time everything came to one. And I understood by way of practice, that my body, when it is here & now, my mind, when it is here & now, should be directed by the love, and I might then to perform my duties and responsibilities beautifully, so it will be love in action. And that made me happy right in that moment, and as long as I was present my happiness never died. There were no obstacles for the happiness to be alive. I saw myself being in touch with whole Cosmos, I was not in the hotel, in the room, and wasn’t cleaning some items, but I was in Cosmos, and cleaning Cosmos, as Cosmos clean itself.
There is an easy way to understand that human made items derived from Earth, and Earth derived from Stars, and Starts derived from Cosmos. As same goes with body, Earth, Stars, Cosmos. And feelings, perceptions, mental formations, consciousness are the Cosmos, just the Cosmos within. So, when body is present and mind is present, and there is love in-between, this is very beautiful, and liberating.
I believe that every work might to be performed like that. Just imagine, roads with love, buildings with love, shops with love, and so on. Because that we see around in cities it is human made, buildings, roads, even planted trees (somebody planted them), so why it can not be made with love? If love is the seed, so love will be a fruit.
Job is job, I worked for a while. I got some insights from that job. After, I go to study at University, and currently doing my double degree. And insight of love in action I also implementing now in my life. When I met Thich Nhat Hanh teachings on Mindfulness it gave me a boost and my development go faster. And now I know that love in action require also to be mindful, to be present for life in order for life to be present.
Now on, every time when I clean at my home I practice.
All the best!
Keep your hearts and minds open for the miracles of life 🙂