I was reminded of the fact that "I am not a Buddha" today when I went to do my last little bit of business regarding the fender bender I was involved in the other day. I had an appointment to see the government insurance company that determines liability. As I readied myself to g to the appointment I could hear my self cherishing point of view that I was right.... Man, that is a hard one to let go of. And during the interview I could hear that irritation rising in my voice as the agent questioned me in a confrontational manner. In the end she decided I was not at fault. I felt tired after the whole event and wished it had not stirred so much emotion in me. I wished I could have been like the monk in the story who when wrongly accused of being the father of a young girls baby simply nods, saying "is that so?" and accepts the baby to look after. But alas here I am, little me, with all my stuff, attached to my opinions and point of view, easily roused from equanimity.
And while it is good to acknowledge the truth of where we are (how else can we change?) I am learning it is also important to cut ourselves a little slack, be kind to the vulnerable humans that we are. It's okay to be where we are and it doesn't stand against the fact that as my teacher would say "we can do better." I realized one thing I could do better here, was pay more attention. I realized during the whole accident process I didn't pay enough attention to the details. I wanted (attachment) it to be an amicable transaction so I was not as careful as I should have been. My inclination toward "niceness" actually worked against me. I needed to be a little more careful and vigilant.
And always, everyday I find there is something for me to learn, something that helps me stretch further in the direction of wisdom and compassion. So while it may not always be fun, it is always worthwhile.
This little mixed media is a contemporary take on a thanka with all the little Buddhas in their circles. It seems to go with the writing, the various sizes and colours of Buddhas speaking to our various places on the path.