Wednesday, June 30, 2010

In Which I Take Another Step Towards Nibbana

(That's Nirvana, for you Westerners)

I bought two puppets while I was in Bangkok a few weeks ago for the transition between programs - a cool-looking shadow puppet of Hanumam (the Monkey King) and a marionette of a white elephant.

I then left both puppets in the back of the van we took to the wat.

I asked poor Phra Bart about it often. He called the driver, but the driver usually wasn't answering his cell phone. With my upcoming shopping trip to Bangkok coming up, I asked Phra Bart about the puppets with more urgency this week, since I wanted to know if I needed to look for new ones.

At the end of my meditation class yesterday, he tried again and this time managed to get the driver on the phone. He talked for a minute or two to him (in Thai), then told me that the driver hadn't seen anything and that the puppets were gone.

I was sad (especially since the shadow puppet was a bit of a financial splurge for me), but I decided it was a good time to put some of what I've been learning about here to practice. So, I reminded myself that because all objects/matter is impermanent, attachment to objects will only lead to suffering. I took the Thai "mai been rai" philosophy, told myself that it doesn't really matter, and I let go of the puppets.

And it worked - I really wasn't that upset about it. I'd find new ones this weekend. Or not. Whatever.

Then, this morning, Sanjoy came to class with two familiar-looking bags. He set them down on the table in front of me, saying "From Phra Bart." My puppets!

It must be because I'm so advanced on my path to Enlightenment, right?

(Then again, the fact that I was so happy to see them defeats everything I learned in the process of losing them. Bad Buddhist!)

1 comment:

  1. It is my personal opinion that really cool puppets (and life size posters of attractive vampires) are not mere objects but an extension of who we are and as such may be excluded from the classification of material objects. I am glad that karma (or Buddah) smiled upon you!