Recently, I found myself sitting quietly outside of an ongoing yoga class at Wanderlust studio in Austin. I was waiting for a class to start and had some time to kill, so I was deep into an intellectual stimulating delve with Twitter. I clearly did not want to be interrupted and was not really in the mood to engage in conversation with anyone.
A man came and sat down, right beside me. I could feel him looking over my shoulder as he asked “Hey, how’s it going?” My response was delayed as I answered “I’m well, Thank you.” — end conversation.
He continued trying to force a conversation out of me as I resisted. He asked “So, do you live here in Austin?” I politely told him that “No, I live in Lubbock, Texas.”
His response: “OH. I am SORRY! (hahahah)”
Intentionally or not, he had officially offended me. I wanted to say so many things in that moment — but he only thing that came to me was a lesson that I learned from Judith Hanson Lasater while studying with her a few months ago. She encouraged each of us, in every situation to remind ourselves: “This is buddha.” As in, this person in front of me is buddha. The person in the mirror is buddha. We are all buddha.
And of course imagine how you would in fact treat the Buddha if you were standing face to face.
Fresh on the mind, I looked at the stranger who had just insulted me and said to myself: “This is buddha.”
I engaged him in conversation and learned that he travels to Lubbock for work often and when he does he covers about a 5 mile radius from his hotel room to the University and eats at the commercial chain restaurants in between. OH!
So, I explained to him that Lubbock is actually quite a lovely place to live. The cost of living is low, there are amazing locally owned restaurants and shops, there is an incredible and budding yoga community and 3 yoga studios! — (oh, and little to no traffic, woot!) I gave him my business card for HWY108, Lubbock’s newest community offering holistic avenues to life and wellness with licensed practitioners in massage, reflexology, reconnective healing, nutrition, sound healing, life-coaching, and individual and couples counseling, along with Yoga Alliance registered yoga teachers from a variety of traditions, that come together to provide experiences in whole health! wow
The buddha was quite blown away by the HWY108 concept. Wide-eyed, he pointed to my HWY108 business card and said, “… THIS is in LUBBOCK?!” I smiled and nodded.
The more we talked he revealed that he didn’t enjoy living in Austin and he absolutely hated all of the traffic that was there. And, I think he changed his mind about Lubbock along the way. I told him to come to class the next time he was in town.
We are all buddha! namaste