The Scott Shaw Blog Be Positive

The Birthday Buddha

It was my birthday the other day.

Birthdays always strike me as kinda strange. I mean everybody makes such a big deal about it being their birthday. And, I guess for some it does become a big deal. But, for me, it never was really like that. I was an inner-city only child, whose parents were way more focused on their careers than me, so I never had birthday parties or anything like that. The one time I did have a kinda cool birthday experience was when I was still a teenage. As I was already long involved with the Eastern Spiritual Tradition, I was on the staff of a spiritual retreat for the Integral Yoga Institute. Someone, somehow figured out it was by B’day and they spread it around. What occurred was that the head Swami decided we had to go out. So, we snuck away from all the, “Retreaters,” who were all in their cabins meditating or asleep and they took me to a local restaurant up in the Santa Monica Mountains, where the retreat we being held, where we had carrot cake. That was pretty cool.

Mostly, on my B’days, wherever I am in the world, here in L.A., or elsewhere, I try to do, at least one small thing, spiritually focused. Normally, I go to a temple or something like that.

Last year I was in Singapore on my B’day so I went to this Hanuman temple I like there. This year, as I was in L.A., I normally have a few choices as there are some very nice Buddhist and Hindu temples in the greater L.A. area. The problem is/was, COVID-19. They are all closed. Not open. So, I could not go to one.

Sure, sure, I get it, the true temple is inside all of us. But, I still like to take in the energy of an intentional spiritual setting. But, not this year. Thanks China!

Most people hope to receive gifts on their B’day. I have this one extended family member who used to fax (remember those) out her wish list every birthday. I always thought that was kinda funny. Me, long ago, I decide it was a way more cool thing to give someone else a gift on my birthday. And, I have always continued to do that.

One B’day, way back in the way back when, I gave my then girlfriend a Rolex. The relationship eventually went South. So, I don’t know if going that elaborate is a great thing to do. But, giving always seems to be the best thing to do (on any occasion) but birthdays seem like the ideal time.

So… Just the suggestion for the day, the year, whatever… Your next B’day, don’t only think about yourself and what you want. Think about someone else and maybe give them what they want.

Giving always seems to be the best medicine. Happy