this too
Wednesday, December 07, 2005
  Still point

Mind, words, everything turning inwards, as December gropes towards the solstice. Thinking – no not thinking, feeling – towards… something. Change, perhaps. Or perhaps acceptance that there’s no change to be made.

The journey from sleep to wakefulness is a long one on these chill, echoing mornings of steaming frost. Just getting out of bed and assuming some semblance of a person and going out into the world feels hard. That’s one dynamic.

The other dynamic is gratitude. Feeling very, very grateful for the recent return to daily meditation practice, and sticking with it, and feeling permeated by it, thanks to dear friends here. Coming back to the still point, the sense of spaciousness, at least once or twice daily. Remembering that it’s always there - that the rushing, the fretting, the alternating waves of inertia and adrenaline, are not all there is - is a huge thing. Really HUGE.

And now: how to move this spaciousness out from the centre and into the rhythm of the days? I need to sit quietly in it for while before I know - hibernate on my cushion, drawing my blanket around me, like a grey cat’s tail.
For me, like anything else new, trying to spread the circle out is a trial-by-error, floundering kind of process. I am not prone to sudden illumination when it comes to changing personal habits. Well, perhaps on an intellectual level, but not when it comes to embodying a proposed change. No, that is slow persistent work for me. I'll be interested to hear how it is for you.
Persistance with the daily meditation will eventually allow you to move out from the center and into everyday life. It is not always a conscious thing - but it comes with practice.
Without my daily meditation practice, life would be much harder. Thank you for pointing me to the 100 days of meditation; I'd like to join, if only for the remaining 9 days! "As December gropes towards the solstice," your writing, this passage, passing through, about the still point, beautiful... xo
Good thoughts for a cold day, as I look outside at wind shaking frosted branches. Keep on meditating.
Your last paragraph resonates strongly with me, Jean. Sometimes there are no quick answers.
No, no easy answers, but I agree with Brenda - without returning again and again to a spiritual practice, life would be a lot harder. But sangha or community matter a lot too. I'm grateful you're there, Jean!
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Freelance copy-editor and translator. Keen on language, literature, photography, art, music, buddhist meditation and the countryside.

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