the monkey mind is a term sometimes used by Buddha to describe the agitated, easily distracted and always moving behavior of ordinary human consciousness. Buddha says "just as a monkey swinging through the trees grabs one branch and lets it go only to seize another, so too, that which is called though, mind or consciousness arises and disappears continually both day and night". i don't know about you but that pretty much describes what goes on in my head at any given moment ... unless i'm truly in the present (something i'm working on). this is a stream of consciousness post. much like the monkey mind i will move from thought to thought without any transitions... it will not be organized in any sort of way, sorry.
right now i'm sitting in my kitchen with a penny sleeping on my lap. the trade winds are here and there is an amazing breeze coming through the windows. the roosters and chickens are clucking away outside the window and penny doesn't seem to be bugged by it at all. a three-year-old is also singing "happy long life to you!" happy long life to you!" (to the tune of "happy birthday"). i'm listening to sleigh bells (the band, not the instrument) on my itunes. i just finished school. my students learned about the weather, poetry and plays ... in that order. i made up a pretty rad version of "three little pigs" that has one student yelling "what's up?!" and another howling at the moon. howling at the moon is very funny to tongan children. it will actually induce belly-aching, rolling-on-the-floor laughter. and as their teacher, this is the kind of learning i like to see. some actual work mixed with playful fun. these kids are learning to read, they are learning to write and they are exploring how to express themselves in a new language. they still make fun of me when i misspeak or say a tongan word wrong (iamsorrybutmanyofthemaresosimilar). the picture in this post is one of my students. she is so bright and so funny and so polite and so full of love. her goal is to be a doctor someday. sometimes i teach her english words that a doctor might use. today two men from new zealand came with the ministry of health and checked every student for signs of heart problems. she was really excited to watch what they were doing. she is two years ahead of where she should be in school and will take the class 6 test in about 2 months. she wants to gain admission into the best high school in tonga. i think she can do it. i challenged her to read 100 books before i left for america... she told me today she has read 206. tonight i will go and practice yoga with a group of really fun people. tomorrow night i will teach the same class. i love yoga so much and i'm so grateful that i can share it with people here. here's to a great rest of the week... and to having "minds like the forest deer"... gentle and completely aware of the now. 'ofa lahi 'atu (much love to you) - mandy