Being close to nature is special. There’s a little bird that comes to sit in my window. The window is textured on the outside so that we cannot see out. It is only to allow light in. There are little cracks around the edges where you can see a little bit, and in the main part of the window, you can see shadows and silhouettes. So when the bird comes, I get on my table and watch him. He’s not real pretty—just a plain brown songbird of some kind. But he always lightens my mood when he comes around. I know that animals are supposed to be a lower life form, but sometimes it seems to me that they are the ones who have got it together more than we humans do.
Venerable Thubten Chodron
Venerable Chodron emphasizes the practical application of Buddha’s teachings in our daily lives and is especially skilled at explaining them in ways easily understood and practiced by Westerners. She is well known for her warm, humorous, and lucid teachings. She was ordained as a Buddhist nun in 1977 by Kyabje Ling Rinpoche in Dharamsala, India, and in 1986 she received bhikshuni (full) ordination in Taiwan. Read her full bio.