It's a dog's life. So I'm working from home now and I can really monitor what the dogs do all day long and as I contemplate my own sense of peace, I can contemplate theirs as well. They do a lot of sleeping, begging and barking at the world outside the house. Occasionally, they will play with each other.
The last time I worked from home, four years ago, Franz would always try to get up into my lap. He doesn't do that anymore. He's getting too old. I bought him a fancy couch (advertised at left)s to get him to stay in the office with me. Sometimes he'll sleep in it. But only when he feels like it.
Everyone always tells me one of my dog is is a Zen master. Just the other day the vet looked shocked when she was listening to his heart beat calmly up on the table. No vet appointment is going to rattle him! Years ago I went on an archaeological trip with the students at Highlands University in Las Vegas, NM, and one of them spent 10 minutes staring at Franz before saying, "Your dog is intense man!"
The Prompt: Animal Nature
Again this week's prompt comes from the Zen by the Brush book by Myoshi Nancy O'Hara.
"Does a dog have the Buddha nature?"
- Zen phrase
And again, first task is to sit for a meditation on that for 5-10 minutes or however long you feel is good to you.
...inspired by my drawing (which looks nothing like Franz but that's the best dog I could do):
Stares like an old sage
Barking out the window now
Will be asleep soon
I always find it strange when people question the spirituality of animals, especially dogs, who snap to the moment better than anyone. Sure, there are dogs that fret and there's a spectrum of dog-calm and they get furiously off-kilter over territorial disputes...and they do seem to dream (going over all the drama of the day). But they still seem better suited to paying attention than we are. Watch a dog beg at the dinner table. I give them people food just to be able to experience it. They're masters of manipulation and the long game.
How about you?