Following Your Destiny
My fourth time attending the Heart of Zen meditation group connected a lot to this week’s readings and underlying themes. Lately I have been thinking a lot of the future, and as an undecided major, I have been thinking hard about things that I would really enjoy doing as a career. At times I get frustrated with the feeling of being clueless, so I knew meditation would be a good chance to escape from it. During my fourth time attending meditation I felt extremely relaxed once clearing my mind of all my nagging thoughts. Every time I attend it is like experiencing an escape from the world and from myself. I knew meditation would be perfect because instead of thinking and thinking about the million things that go through my mind, I could focus on the right here, right now, steady sounds of the air flowing in and out of my lungs. With the pressure I have been putting on myself it was a relief to sit down, focus on my breathing, and practice the art of the Zen meditation.
The readings and poems “Serving up Hope,” by Stephanie Shapiro, “A Father,” by Bharati Mukherjee, “Directions for Resisting the SAT,” by Richard Hague, and “First Practice,” by Gary Gildner all convey an underlying message and theme of being in charge of yourself and your own life, and making your own destiny. Connecting to my fourth experience at meditation where my destiny and life we’re on my mind, after these readings and my time spent at meditation, it helped me realize that everyone has dreams , but it’s up to us to decided where they will go.
In the reading by Stephanie Shapiro, “Serving up Hope” the couple Galen and Bridget Sampson open an institute to train new chefs giving former drug users and convicts a fresh start to life. Galen Sampson speaks of how he had been searching for a way to apply his skills, give back, and make the biggest difference that he could. Galen Sampson followed his dream and opened up the Dogwood Deli with a grant from the Baltimore Community Fellowship program. He now helps people who have struggled in the past master skills that are in demand in the food industry getting them back on their feet and a second chance in life. Although Galen Sampsons dream might seem very risky to some, he followed his dream and has offered amazing opportunities to the Baltimore community. The message of the reading is that Sampson took charge and followed his destiny and dream, and helped so many people that have dealt with problems in their past. Because of this, in many senses, the Sampson’s have saved the lives of many giving them this opportunity at a new life.
The reading “A Father” by Bharati Mukherjee, tells the story of a father and his relationship with his wife and daughter. Mr. Bhowmick is very in touch with his Indian culture, unlike his wife and daughter who are more American and do not follow the traditions that he does. When Mr. Bhowmick finds out that his daughter, Babli, is pregnant he doesn’t know what to think, having question upon question race through his mind. As the weeks go by he says nothing to his daughter watching her every move and her belly grow. When Mr. Bhowmicks wife find out of Bablis pregnancy, it is revealed that not only is she unmarried and pregnant, but she induced the pregnancy from a donor. As the three scream at each other Mr. Bhowmick becomes enraged hearing this and smacks his daughters belly with a rolling pin. Although Babli knows of her father’s traditions and strong Indian culture she goes through with the pregnancy anyways because that is what she wants out of her life. Although the story ends badly Bablis bold move to induce her pregnancy despite of her parents opinions shows that Babli making her own destiny. She didn’t feel that she needed a husband or her parents, she made her own decisions and decided her destiny and life for herself.
In the poem by Richard Hague, “Directions for Resisting the SAT,” the speaker explains to make your own destiny without following the everything we’re always told to do. The speaker says to not follow the everyday rules of life, to be yourself and do what you believe, to “Listen to no one”. The speaker relates this to the SAT by expressing to the reader to not let the test define who you are, but to follow your destiny despite of the test. This poem relays a strong message of following one’s destiny, although in a slightly rebellious tone, the speaker tells the reader to make your own path, and to not let a test do it for you.
In the poem “First Practice,” by Gary Gildner, the speaker tells about his first practice at what seems to be a school sports team. He tells of his coach and how hard he is, aiming to win and to never lose. The speaker expresses how the coach pushes them, which reflect s the opportunities and potential the team has at their first ever practice. The underlying message of the poem is also about destiny, and following ones dreams, to give everything your all and to decided your destiny for yourself.
The four readings and my fourth experience at the Heart of Zen meditation have all expressed a sense of being in charge of yourself, your life, and making your own destiny. Everyone should take charge of their future and decide their destiny and passions in life, instead of letting life take control. Following your dreams and your destiny although may be challenging at time, is extremely rewarding. Although I have been feeling a bit clueless with where my life and destiny should go, after having time to breathe at Heart of Zen meditation and reflecting on the readings I realize that although I may not exactly know where everything is headed at this particular moment, if I follow my dreams, my destiny, and my heart, I am bound to get there.