Posted by: Upāsaka Subhavi | 11/01/2013

A Test Failed

Despite the title there really isn’t as much self-recrimination here as one might expect. Last night, walking the streets of the village with a gaggle of kids and their parents we happened to be chastised by a pair of Manhattanites for occupying space that they obviously assumed was theirs to use exclusively. The woman commanded us imperiously not to stand in the middle of the sidewalk as we waited for our children to return from the inside of a restaurant where they were retrieving candy. Sadly, my first impulse was to loudly retort how ridiculous it was that some people believed that this island of 2 million people belonged exclusively to them. Luckily, it ended there and neither the woman nor her partner replied.

Why am I disturbed? Precisely because my first reaction was base and untrained and rooted in aversion. What does it tell me? That I have been right in redoubling my efforts to train in the brahmaviharas and that I yet have much work. I failed the test but at least I know that I am on the right track.

May we strive diligently to quell the flames of hatred and aversion!


  1. You did not fail at all. You felt aversion, was mindful and then moved on. That’s good stuff!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Shillelagh Studies

A hub for the music, culture, knowledge, and practice of Irish stick-fighting, past and present.