There was a time when I offered the morning incense with utmost care, placing the stick in the bowl with the most perfect harmony I could muster ... harmony with statue and water bowl and flowers ... a balanced and soothing and peaceful array. Attention! Attention! Attention!
These days, I have grown careless by comparison. The offering is made but its perfection and utter attention has been lost.
The incense smells as sweet.
Is there something greater than yourself in life -- some God or ineffable tingling that promises some promising promise ... something greater and on high that makes you weep with yearning and for which the beads of sweat pop out along a furrowed brow? Some peace or clarity or enfolding love?
Is there something greater than yourself in life?
And the answer is yes there is ... the very thing that careful, attentive, sweaty Buddhists refer to without daring to smile at the utter redundancy as "your true self."
Smell the incense?