The Yellow School Bus


A Chinese professor and his 6-year old son are currently living with us. Every weekday at 8AM, the bright yellow school bus arrives at the end of our driveway.

When the bus pulls up, the monitor shepherds the little boy onto the bus, after he says goodbye to his father. Then she performs a safety check. She carries out this task with patience and grace every day. A wise Process that has no doubt saved many lives over the years…

The Wisdom Wheel can be our school bus, leading us to and from lessons in life. Let’s say there are 36 seats on the bus, each a Law to review on the way to our next appointment.

As youngsters we sit in the seats of Trust, Love, Creativity and Eternal Present, laughing, playing and learning. Onwards to teen years, we feel maybe more comfortable with Higher Purpose, Right Action, Initiation and Choices. Older and older still, into old age… A bus of seniors who have embraced the Law of Integrity, after a lifetime of experiences. They sit in the place of Compassion, Purification, Surrender and Enlightenment.

One day (or rather, on more than one day) the bus will take us to the school of hard knocks. The Wisdom Wheel is a tool we can use on those occasions, when we need it most, to overcome challenges and learn from them. A few more rides on the yellow school bus, and we’ll be experts, sitting where we want. We will be ready for the lesson, no matter where or when it appears.


Keys and Egos


We all live with keys. We use them to open all sorts of locks. But what keys do we use to unlock a more fulfilling and happy life?

I think that locked away in many of us is a casket of shame. It’s filled with regrets, admonishments, “shoulds”, “coulds” and more. But, if we use the Law of Love or Forgiveness or both as keys, we can open that casket and release the negativity holding us back.

Some of us have a box of arrogance, likely stored next to the box of fears. Or other boxes, that go by other names. All in all, these constructs form a kind of wall that protects our egos.

But when we unchain ourselves from our egos and move forward in life from a place of love and openness, we’re bound to find fulfillment and happiness.

Personally, my most treasured keys are that of connection and kindness. They’ve opened many open locks and hearts, including my own.


On Deepening Balance


Last night, the yoga instructor invited us to set an intention for our practice. Usually, the Law I’m carrying comes to mind first. This month, it’s Balance. I thought of “deepening Balance” as my intention. To me, this means being less frazzled by what goes on around me.

Earlier that day, my husband and I had an argument in the car. He was taking me to a new Indian restaurant and relied on his phone’s GPS to guide him. When he turned to take the wrong exit, I mentioned it was the next one. Then he made another wrong turn at a roundabout and still another.

My anxiety rose. I realized I was gripping the armrest, uneasy, as though we might have an accident. Two of us were in the car, I wanted to be useful. Do I shut up and do nothing or speak up?

Balance. How do we hold onto it when we are fearful?

My husband will turn 67 next month. His reflexes are slower than they once were. When I offered to help navigate, he only became angrier.

“You talk a lot about teamwork,” I reminded him, though he was in no mood to have me on his team in that moment. Why not?

No one wants to be appear less than competent, especially in front of a spouse whose opinion counts for a lot. My husband claimed my presence made it difficult for him to concentrate. So I tried to remain calm while he struggled to work things out.

I thought of other women dealing with irascible husbands and trying to keep the peace. For the sake of harmony, we often keep our opinions to ourselves and then suffer when men insist on leading even when they’re wrong. How can we achieve Balance when half of us are not allowed our input?

Eventually, we reached the restaurant and ate our curry. But even now, I can’t stop thinking about how this ties into the world at a macro-level. Wars, refugees, climate change, economic disparity. All these problems require a re-Balancing. So far, my personal micro-level need for Balance has been heightened, not deepened.


On Puzzles and the Universal Laws


As a child, I loved puzzles. My grandmother had several jigsaw puzzles and I bought more at secondhand shops. Recently I’ve begun working on them again.

Here's the latest puzzle I've completed

Here’s the latest puzzle I’ve completed

Look closely at the top right corner and you’ll see a missing piece. I searched high and low, under the desk, behind the curtain, in the cupboard, but never found it.

The missing piece

The missing piece

Where are empty spaces in the jigsaw puzzle that is life? For that matter, do we even have a picture or vision of our “completed puzzle” as our lives unfold and we gather experiences? To me it seems, without a map or a clear image, we’re assembling this puzzle  in the dark.

The Wisdom Wheel can be a puzzle for each of us. With its 36 pieces, you can create your own vision for your life. For example, where do we place the Balance piece? What of Right Relationship and the Law of Love? We can move the pieces around to suit: where shall I place my Compassion today?

Through study of the Wisdom Wheel and sitting circle with friends, we can create a jigsaw puzzle, full of color and vibrancy, that reflects our lives or the lives we want to lead.


So Many Perspectives


During childhood visits to my grandmother’s house, I was fascinated by her dresser and its three mirrors.

I’d align the two outer mirrors across from each other, then peer into one to behold an infinite number of images repeating on and on, seemingly forever. At that young age, I didn’t know how mirrors create and guide laser beams, but I’d learn that lesson later during my engineering studies.

We can align the Wisdom Wheel to our Journey through life, too. When we look at the Laws or values, what do we see? An infinite number of possibilities honed down to a few key principles. There are 36 Laws on the Wheel and we can look at each Law through the prism of the Wisdom Wheel itself.

For example, looking at the Integrity stone, I ask myself: “Am I in Right Relationship with Integrity?”– basically, do my actions follow my words? I know it’s easier to talk about Integrity than embody it.

Or I gaze at the Law of the Self and try to see it through the Law of Compassion. “Do I have Compassion for myself? How do I Balance my Self Compassion in Right Relationships?”

Of course, it’s much easier to go through the motion of the principles of the Wisdom Wheel than practice them. Embracing the Shadow, or Journeying to a place of Forgiveness for Self and others are no simple tasks. It’s difficult to personify all the Laws, all the time.

We’re all works in progress. I will continue to grow with the guidance of the Wisdom Wheel, becoming more than mirrors reflecting into eternity. Ready for whatever comes next.