Embrace Mother Nature

I guess I’ve finally gone native. It snowed here yesterday, and I was indignant along with the other Seattleites. After all, it’s almost the end of February. The horror of it all!

This seems strange sentiment coming from a native New Yorker who lived for thirteen years in Minnesota. In my heart and in my head, I know we are lucky to get a mere dusting of snow in February when the heaviest accumulations hit Minneapolis in March, and frozen temperatures occur there well into April. I know that, but I prefer our wimpier West Coast ways. I am tired of the cold, and I was sad to see the pansies weighed down by yesterday’s minor downfall. Now it’s all melted, and equilibrium has been restored. The weather is beautiful today, warm and sunny.

We all adjust to our local atmospheres, although every time I move somewhere new I’m told the weather is atypical for the place itself. Either I am responsible for this shift in weather—and you should begin to do rain dances for me—or there is no typical weather at all. I’m going to go with the second option, because I’d like to think it’s not the third choice, the dreaded global warming. It’s probably a mix of all three.

What can we do about it? Since I don’t really control the weather, try as I might, I’ve got to go back to my Buddhist roots to find some help. Buddhism teaches that attachment is the root of all suffering, and if we can let that go, we’ll be happier. In other words, the only reason the snow annoyed me yesterday was because I wished it wasn’t there. It wasn’t inherently that unpleasant all by itself, and the tiny white drifts actually looked very pretty against the green grass and the yellow flowers. I did not create the snow, but I did make myself suffer for it. Why should I do that, when there’s so much fun to be had? Darned if I know.

Your assignment, should you choose to accept it:

220. What is the weather today? Try to experience it based on what it actually is, not on what you wished it would be.

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