Monday, November 27, 2006

Mindful Knitting

I attend knitting classes at my LYS, where the rule is you have to buy your yarn for the class from the store (smart business plan). Their yarns are wonderful, but not cheap, so I joke about the $60 baby sweater and $95 shawl I knit in these classes. I could buy something similar for much less money, so what value is added by my work?

I practice a slacker form of Buddhism, meditating when I can, which isn't often enough. I knit more than I sit, by a long shot. Can knitting and sitting be wed?

Tonglen is the Buddhist practice of taking in suffering and releasing blessings. It is (relatively) easy to want to take on the suffering of loved ones and shower them with good wishes, more difficult to do this for strangers or for ourselves or for those we really don't like very much (like exes). Is there a way to learn compassion from knitting?

My knit products go to family and friends. I hold these folks in my mind while I knit, send them good thoughts via the yarn, hope they feel warm and warm feelings when they wear my love. I have yet to try this with anyone outside my immediate circle of concern, even though there are lots of charities, like Dulaan and Kaps for Kendall, that accept homemade knit goods.

I guess I am not that far along the path.

No comments: