Page 21 - The.Miracle.of.Mindfulness
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why put so much stress on a simple thing? But 

that's precisely the point. The fact that I am 

standing there and washing these bowls is a 

wondrous reality. I'm being completely myself, 

following my breath, conscious of my presence, 

and conscious of my thoughts and actions. 

There's no way I can be tossed around mind- 

lessly like a bottle slapped here and there on 

the waves.

The cup in your hands

In the United States, I have a close friend 

named Jim Forest. When I first met him eight 

years ago, he was working with the Catholic 

Peace Fellowship. Last winter, Jim came to visit. 

I usually wash the dishes after we've finished 

the evening meal, before sitting down and drink- 

ing tea with everyone else. One night, Jim asked 

if he might do the dishes. I said, "Go ahead, but 

if you wash the dishes you must know the way 

to wash them." Jim replied, "Come on, you think 

I don't know how to wash the dishes?" I an- 

swered, "There are two ways to wash the dishes. 

The first is to wash the dishes in order to have 

clean dishes and the second is to wash the dishes 

in order to wash the dishes." Jim was delighted 

and said, "I choose the second wash the 

dishes to wash the dishes." From then on, Jim 

knew how to wash the dishes. I transferred the 

"responsibility" to him for an entire week.

If while washing dishes, we think only 

of the cup of tea that awaits us, thus hurrying 

out of 
to get the dishes the way as if they were


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