“Honest Scraps” being handed out…

2009 May 23

honest_scrap1Tag. I’m it.

The awesome Zen Dot Studio hit me up with The Honest Scrap Award – a nod to blogs noted as particularly super to the person who bestows the award on the bloggy recipient and on and on it goes.

“This award is bestowed upon a fellow blogger whose blog content or design is, in the giver’s opinion, brilliant. This award is about bloggers who post from their heart, who oftentimes put their heart on display as they write from the depths of their soul.”

The recipient needs to speak or brag of receiving the award, name 7 blogs they find awesome and then list 10 honest things about themselves.

Here’s the braggadocio… or as best of a braggadocio as I can muster (with an added dose of honesty for bonus scraps) – I find it difficult to accept rewards or being recognized in a positive way. Call it the product of a crappy childhood without positive esteem, I just feel all goofy, butterflytummy-like and get all self-conscious. It’s good work to try to let go of all of the awkwardness when people praise you and I try to maintain a moderate sense of puffed-up-ery when the spotlight shines my way. Hard to walk that middle way of not being to bloated and self-assured and too meek and self-effacing.

Here’s the list of 7 blogs that honestly rock my world…

1. Gwen Bell

I’ve followed Gwen since she started podcasting with the Buddhist Geeks and I was thrilled to see a girl share her experiences of modern Buddhism, although many times I felt she had taken some unnecessary criticism for voicing her views. I’m most impressed with Gwen’s absolute honesty and willingness to share. She is empowering others and doing so not out of a full on wish for ego or power, but rather to make this place a better one and helping people to connect. Gwen lives fully, whether it is in joy, sadness or a bit in between.

Gwen. How I love watching you grow and blossom!


2. Brad Warner

In this photo, he’s on the right hand side (just so you know) and in the past I was quite guilty of mentally vilifying him to be as harmful as his buddy on the left. The brash, bad-boy of Buddhism who takes on those evil-doers who seek to pervert the dharma is honest. I can’t fault him for that. In fact, I like him even more for it.

3. Homeless Tom

I’ve been reading Tom’s blogpost from the days of Zen Unbound and his journey on the path has been one which gives a strong first person account of the voice of homelessness. He’s whip smart, creative and a fresh voice and I believe he needs to get a book deal – STAT. I learn so much from him.


4. Precious Metal rocks my world features a mix of personal writings, reports on relevant news items, details on how to be socially engaged in numerous organizations and causes and so very much more. The voice of this dedicated metal Buddhist family man is music to my ears.

5. Bodhi Armour is a new find for me and I love Harry’s writing style. Check it-

“Are you an Angry Buddhist? If so, don’t be under the illusion that you’ll get sympathy here. I think angry people mostly make assholes of themselves. I’m mostly an asshole when I’m angry.

This {blog} isn’t a support group. Its for people who are willing to kick their crutches away and let their cruddy little lives swallow them up whole and proper… and I mean that in the nicest possible way.”

6. A Monk Amok is another new find and features the writing of Gyatso who is currently studying Tibetan Buddhsim and is dedicated to spreading the dharma in the West. Described as a “Buddhist Monk Wreaking Havoc on Samsara”, the stories that he’s sharing about his time in Nepal are quite enjoyable.

7. Enlightenment Ward never disappoints and if this blog did, then it would no doubt lead me into asking why I felt the samsaric pangs of disappointment.

Now for the 10 honest things about myself:

1. I think, think and overthink. My attachment to this relative reality is so familiar and cozy that there are times I can’t fathom what ditching the raft might feel like. Shambhala refers to this as the cocoon and boy oh boy, do I seem to want to dwell in it. Cocoon stink and all.

2. It took me a long time to make peace with one of the most fractured relationships in my life only to engage in a relationship with someone so very similar. Funny how patterns repeat themselves if you let them. Even stranger is how sometimes we’re not even aware of the repetition of the pattern.  I should have seen all the signs. Coulda Shoulda Woulda. I reassure myself with the thought that I needed to go through these levels of suffering to fully understand what suffering is and to maintain the vow not to inflict suffering on another sentient being.

3. I worry that I’m not living to my potential and often engage in self-depreciating humour as protective armour to guard against setting myself up for failure. I’ve always been a mixture of the clown + the thinker. Being any other way wouldn’t be authentic for me.

4. I find it difficult to relax. Breathing exercises and I don’t get along. I hate having my head massaged and shampooed at the hairdressers and I’m sure that they notice that I have the most tense neck muscles, scalp and hair foliciles they’ve every laid fingertip to.

5. When I was younger, I had a lot of anger in me. I believed in an “eye for an eye” and was confident that the death penalty was just. The dichotomy in this was that I was a member of PETA and fighting for animal rights. I didn’t really see the interdependence in things at that point.

6. I dwell in the past more than I like and need to work on being in the present much more than I am. At this point in my life, more than ever, I’m in a present state that is positive, nurturing and encouraging and it seems strange to me not be able to rest in it.

7. I often stray to the “dark side” and have depressive tendencies. I see the negative side of things more than I’d like. (Back to those old aforementioned tendencies and habitual patterns).

8. I wish I was more of a “team player” in the sangha environment. I often sit on the sidelines to allow others to take their place, but don’t take my own.

9. I’ve always been afraid of dying, hate the idea of losing the people (and pets) close to me and worry that I won’t be equipped to work through my own death. Not sure how many times I can read Stephen Levine’s “One Year to Live” but I think I need to dig it out again.

10. I am more in love than I’ve ever been in my entire life. It feels amazing, but I’ve never felt so vulnerable. I’ve only recently been able to let go of much of the sabotaging behaviours I tended to engage in as a means of self protection and am more relaxed than I’ve ever been. When I see myself in his eyes, I feel so loved and much stronger than I’ve ever felt before. Quite overwhelming when you’re not used to it. That’s for sure.

This was soooo uncomfortable. Honesty eeek!

2 Responses
  1. May 24, 2009

    Thank you very much for noticing my blog Enlightenment Ward.

    As for future disappointments that reminds me of a song:

    You see I’ve been through the desert on a horse with no name
    It felt good to be out of the rain
    In the desert you can remember your name
    ‘Cause there ain’t no one for to give you no pain
    La, la …

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