Today I am baking a passionfruit tart to share with our bookclub friends tonight. I made it first for the wedding last weekend, and we were all swooning over the delicious passionfruity creaminess! If you look up the recipe and bake it, be sure to use at least four passionfruit … as our vine is dropping them abundantly I used six.
Friends and family bring so much joy, and dare I say, opportunities for growth. The wedding was a rich experience, ages ranging from my step-father who is 93, through to babies under six months, and another who is yet to be born. I was aware of the human life span, the constant cycle of birth, parenting and death, and the Buddhist idea that all beings have at one time been our mother, our father, our child, our partner.
“In the long course of rebirth there is not one among living beings with form who has not been mother, father, brother, sister, son, or daughter, or some other relative. Being connected with the process of taking birth, one is kin to all wild and domestic animals, birds, and beings born from the womb” (Lankavatara Sutra).
Therefore we can feel equanimity towards all beings, neither being attracted nor repelled by any, since all are the same, all have loved and cared for us at some time, and all are hoping for a life free of suffering. In yoga the same idea is expressed; here in a translation by my teacher Donna Farhi:
“Those who see all beings in themselves,
And themselves in all beings,
How can the seeming diversity of life
Delude the one who has seen its unity” Isha Upanishad 6-7
The passionfruit tart is a lovely illustration, all those yummy little black seeds swirling in the creamy mixture, all those many lives, those many beings constantly swirling in and out of this world.