A Corgi, a Basketball, and the Human Condition

So I found myself taking advantage of the gorgeous day and tending to the yard work that I had been putting off. Though I had a lot of other housekeeping to do, I relented to hedging and cleaning out the front beds. I am never disappointed when I work outside. Just being out in nature offers me insights that I might not have otherwise recognized. 

My five dogs naturally followed me outside. All relaxed in the sun, except one – Peeta; he found one of his favorite toys in the yard, a basketball almost bigger than he is. 

Now, anyone who has a terrier (especially a Corgi) knows just how relentless they can be. This little menace kept throwing the ball up onto my feet and and rake and chasing the ball through the flower beds,  trampling the pansies. I kept chucking the ball for him, but he started becoming a nuisance.

I threw the ball up onto the porch to keep him from running through the beds, and found some relief from his incessant pestering because the ball had landed in one of the chairs on the porch. He didn’t return with the ball, and I began to hear his whining. So that I could finally get some work done, I left him to pine over the ball he couldn’t retrieve, but the situation began to show me a larger perspective. The lessons were two fold. 

How many times have we heard that incessant whine of our ego? That pestering to keep us from our larger mission? What could we do to entertain our ego so that we might attend to the work of our Purpose? 

Throwing the ball each time Peeta tossed it upon me just kept him engaged in the game. I wasn’t getting very far playing along with him. 

Just like our ego, the more we entertain it, the more it will insist we play along. Is there a way to offer the ego a job, a distraction it can fixate on, so that we might get our work accomplished? This is something I will have to continue to ponder…  But let’s examine yet another perspective of Peeta’s pining.  

How many times have we been the Corgi? Trying to claim that object that we just can’t seem to grasp? Believe it or not, little Peeta was offering me insight. Thank you, pup!

I kept on with my work, listening to his agonizing pleas to get that ball. I let him continue to expend himself to get more work done, but I suddenly felt to capture the moment on video before I lost the chance. 

Please excuse my verbal encouragement.

Once I got closer, I could see why he couldn’t get the ball. He was so, so close – he could see it, touch it – but each time he tried to jump onto the chair, it would turn away from him and he would falter. From my vantage point, I could see if he just timed it just right, he would be able to get the ball, but his fixation, and his limited understanding, kept him from achieving this. 

How many times have we been able to see and touch our objective, but our approach just didn’t help us attain it? How many times have we tried the same approach over and over with the same results? How many times have we just been too close to the situation, not seeing that the right timing and the right angle of approach would be just the ticket to success? 

Seeing such simple experiences in life from such vastly different perspectives, that is the gift of an empowered mind, a mind that can step outside the confines of superficial appearances to gather deeper insight. The more one dedicates him/herself to separating from the lesser human ego, the broader one’s awareness and understanding becomes. The aware individual now moves from person in the yard doing chores, mastering the task at hand, to the varied understanding given by the situation, offered by an innocent little dog. 

These shifts in awareness, and the edification they offer, that is the gift of awakened Consciousness. Unraveling the mystery of the human condition on the porch with my dog, well, that’s just all in a days work! 

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