Very thankful to the Monks for allowing us to take photographs with them (women can't sit right next to them) & for immersive experiences, like #MonkChat
-ting WITH a young "city monk" (where I found out they even have social media these days- didn't grab his IG tho 🤷🏻♀️😛) or so closely viewing an actual a #MonkChant
(it was pretty funny to see some monks on their phone during the chant 😂).
Thailand has opened my mind up to the intrigue of Buddhism. I've only briefly known about its philosophies before, but after discovering more during our temple visits (swipe for the majestically HUGE Reclining Buddha), I've developed a desire to shape my life around Buddhist values. Learning that Buddhism accepts everyone, judging no one, is something that resonates with me. Monks are even able to leave/come back as they please.
The idea of meditation for peace & calm of mind is a huge aspect that I've been practicing--staying in the present moment has brought me immense "wokeness". I've gotten SO much better at this, even small routine tasks, such as showering or driving can be a form of meditation.
I'm currently tackling the lessons of compassion for all & non-attachment - both I've innately held, but have a hard time practicing, creating a lot of my suffering. I won't ever perfect these due to a dependence on staying connected, but for now, I can say I've let go of thinking I may have made the "wrong choice" & accepted the repurcussions of leaving those I left behind, who don't serve me well, as they have too much weight of their own to conquer. I wasn't ready to help myself, so I couldn't help others. No matter how much love I was given, it was never enough. Deep down, I only truly wanted the love to come from myself.
Through these travels of being around new ideas, people, & experiences, I've already learned a lot about the beauty of joy. People WILL try to take your joy away, whether they recognize it or not. Sometimes, it will be wrapped in good intentions if they, themselves, cannot see the true nature of their actions. One day, I hope to come to a place where no one can take MY joy away. That'll be where true happiness lies 💛