Meet Daphne Zuniga
MEET THE MUSE: Daphne Zuniga ~ friend, girlfriend, actress, environmentalist, blabbermouth, buddhist, scorpio, star of Spaceballs, Melrose Place, One Tree Hill, etc. and one time co-star with Lucille Ball (really).
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Moments of full awareness and weeping because my heart is overflowing with love and gratitude for life and being alive to experience this miracle.
(Right? Those are the best – heart full, eyes overflowing!)
What is the trait you are most grateful for in yourself?
What is the trait you most cherish in others?
What breaks your heart?
The destruction of innocence. Just kills me. Often times, the news does it, so I don’t watch it.
What is your current state of mind?
A bit tired from shooting a movie, so I am assuring myself it’s time to be a little foggy and slow, time to curl up, take care, and rest.
What is your most marked characteristic?
I have no idea – blabbermouth?
(Just so you know, your openness and authenticity are so very awesome!)
If you could inspire one change in yourself, what would it be?
Only one? I’d like more letting go and enjoying without need to examine and understand.
If you could inspire one change in the world, what would it be?
The world as a matriarchy, where men and women know and value “The Feminine” and carry it into all societies so that the quality and experience of life improves for all beings.
Where do you look for inspiration in your daily life?
Nature definitely. My boyfriend/husband (it’s one man, not two). We see things so differently and when I let down my addiction to feeling right, I revel in his point of view!
What do you mean? Being remembered for Spaceballs and Melrose Place is plenty enough. Ha! No, I’ve always thought I didn’t care how I was remembered because I won’t be here. BUT, when I’m gone, it would be wonderful if remembering me made someone love and accept themselves more. OMG, that brings tears to my eyes.
(That is a very “OMG” worthy thought. I feel the same way).
What is your motto?
We each are in a dance with the universe; don’t step on her toes.
Tell us a little about your mindfulness practice.
I started meditating vipassana, or insight meditation, about 13 years ago. I went to my first 8 day silent retreat, and it changed my whole life because it changed my whole perspective! Though it was a very difficult process for me, I came out of it loving myself in a truer, more whole way than I ever had. These days, I do a 20-35 minute sit each day. I notice that, not only do I have less stress, I also enjoy more. I have friends who also do it, and we touch base each day when we each sit, so the support of a group makes it more wonderful.
What/who inspired your mindfulness practice?
WHAT inspired it was my unhappiness with what was going on in my life. I’d “hit a wall,” and I got through it with that first meditation retreat. My first teachers, Sharon Salzberg and Joseph Goldstein, are still the most inspiring to me. They are the founders of Insight Meditation Society. Also, Jack Kornfield the co-founder of Spirit Rock Meditation Center and Krishna Das who introduced me to them and whose chanting has opened my heart so wide I felt like I was on drugs! I tend to get intellectual about things so heart opening practices are perfect because they take me into different realms and meet other needs.
I currently attend the programs at Insight LA, started 10 years ago by a great teacher, Trudy Goodman. She brings amazing teachers and authors to Los Angeles, and they have classes and programs for everyone throughout the city.
What are the challenges you face with your mindfulness practice?
In my meditation, it’s that I want to sit longer like I used to, but that will take practice! The challenges of being mindful in life ~ well, I have a quick temper sometimes so I can get angry and react in a way I later regret. Being mindful, or a “good buddhist,” doesn’t mean you don’t get angry, it means you use right speech and right action in that anger. This has been my challenge. I wish I were that calm, even-keeled person… I guess that’s why I live with one.
What do you love most about your mindfulness practice?
The silence, the stillness. Sometimes it’s like velvet. I also love that it is sometimes the only moments I fully witness my own self, as is, without judgement or distraction. That act, repeated, has created a much happier relationship with myself. During my first years doing it, I felt like a mother paying attention to, and therefore loving, her child. That is all our inner child wants, to be seen. When I am in better relationship with myself, I relate to others better, from a more understanding and insightful place.
It was a huge surprise that meditation is not merely calming down. It is in fact an enormously powerful act of self-witnessing. It is Self-Love.
(I love that description: “an enormously powerful act of self-witnessing.” Meditation really does feel like velvet sometimes!)
What are working on currently?
I just finished a TV movie and I am developing a half-hour comedy for television. Very Exciting! I value the people who are advising and helping me. It is a new journey.
Hmmm. Good question! Muse Conference has supported already supported me! That was a first time for me ~ speaking at a women’s conference. It completely fulfilled me. The other talks and the other women there were all very inspiring!!
Because this is our “Back to School” Issue: Who are your greatest teachers?
I want to thank a teacher I had in 7th grade, the year I got into my first play. He saw my trouble-making attitude as creative restlessness and put me in my first Drama class! Mr. Knorr, wherever you are, you are a teacher who changed the course of my life. You saw what I hadn’t even seen yet. I thank you with all my heart.
What has been your most difficult lesson?
How is the best way to really do this life, to do a lot great things? Is it to see and and experience a lot? Or to be simple and true? I feel an annoying external push to DO, BE, and experience greatness. It’s from our internet culture I think…I want to push back and say “what the hell is wrong with how I am right now?” Life is miraculous whether it’s being among the pretty things in exotic places, or on the sofa with your grandmother. Right?
(Right. Life doesn’t have to be BIG to be full.)
How to keep the feminine alive and thriving ~ the emotional, intuitive, wise, creative, dreaming, feeling side of myself vs. allowing it to be brushed aside by my inner masculine ~ i.e. the intellectual, logical, do-er, planner, orderly side of myself.
(I think the greatest lesson for all of us ~ male or female ~ is to find the balance between these two sides. Perhaps that is when we will know true equality. I’m going to muse on that one for a while.)
Thank you for the inspiration! xo, muse.
Comments are closed