Gregg Chadwick. I was fortunate enough to learn about this photo because I recently joined the Buddha fan page on facebook. I joined their fan page after I learned of the PBS special that will air tomorrow night, Wednesday, April 7th - The Buddha: A Film by David Grubin. The documentary will be narrated by Richard Gere and will tell the life of Buddha. Insights will be shared by the Dalai Lama. And there will be conversation on meditation, the history of Buddhism, and how to incorporate the Buddhist's teaching of compassion and mindfulness into daily life.
You can learn more about it by visiting the PBS website.
Something about this photo captured me. Not only is the oil painting in the background absolutely mesmerizing ... something about the peaceful face of Buddha, the little girl in front of the painting ... my roots, my past, my innocence. I guess the little girl reminds me of me. It reminds me of a photo i cherish ... it's a photo of me when I was 3 years old, when my Papa was still alive and healthy, and when he held me in his arms. The little girl in me wants to believe what my mom has told me after he died when I was four: "Your Papa is up in heaven and he's on the right hand side of God." As an adult, I guess it doesn't matter to me whether he's on the right hand side or the left hand side ... just that he's with God and that he's up there, somewhere, in the heavens watching over me. It's interesting how my spirit yearns for both the teachings of Christianity and the teachings of Buddhism. Maybe christianity stretches my spirit up to the heavens, and Buddhism grounds me.
Buddha means "awakened".
God is defined by Merriam Webster as "the supreme or ultimate reality ... the Being perfect in power, wisdom, and goodness who is worshipped as creator and ruler of the universe."
My mind craves scientific data and facts. My spirit soars in mystery, faith and questions.
The age old question of Does God exist will continue ... I ask myself, "How can you believe in something you can't touch or feel?" My answer: "I don't know. I guess it's all I had as a child when darkness surrounded me. It was my mind, my imagination and my belief in something bigger that kept me alive."
I guess i'm grateful I don't have to see something to believe in something. I remind myself every morning when I meditate and focus on my breathing ... I can't see or even touch air ... yet, I know that it's there because I can breathe.
I would notice the absence of air. In the same way, I would notice the absence of God, and I would notice the absence of Buddha.
Namaste.... hope you'll join me tomorrow night in watching The Buddha on PBS.