this morning's meditation was interesting and insightful. I really spend a lot of time thinking. We all do and this is no real revelation - I suppose, though, when the intention is to sit down and SEE the level and amount of thoughts that come in, its pretty damn amazing. The good news is that I wasn't trying to fight it and I wasn't angry or frustrated (in times past I've stopped meditating because I thought the goal was to try to stop thinking.) I was seeing how easy it was, however, to let the thoughts wander - let my mind wander. I was a big day dreamer as a kid. Spent a lot of time thinking happy day dream fantasy thoughts about anything and everything. I am sure this was a coping skill because my reality wasn't so fun at times growing up. This morning I was seeing all the day dreamy fantasy thoughts: I was having conversations with friends that were kind of like wishes of conversations to come. I noticed it and looked at and asked myself a simple question about what is underneath this. The answer was very simple: there is a desire to be seen, heard, known, valued, validated in my relationships. I smiled and said to myself, "I see you, Linda. I hear you Linda. I know you Linda. I value and validate you, Linda." I then went back to watching my breath and being in the moment, only to have another thought drift in. It is going to take practice to keep being aware like this and it does feel nice.
I began reading Pema Chodron's book, "When Things Fall Apart" - it's for this meditation class coming up. I bought it several years ago but didn't read it. I bought it when things began to really fall apart but I couldn't bring myself to read it. I suppose it was enough to have validation that there is a book like this out there! LOL It's a good book. I haven't read anything of Chodron before and I find her to be very honest - there's some other quality, too, that I haven't put my finger on. Maybe it's that she's practicing Tibetan Buddhism and there's some quality in that. I like it though - it's different. It's not touchy-feely. It's pretty raw and honest. I can appreciate that.
In all these books the authors talk about how tragic it is that we leave the present moment. I have to find the way in which they wrote it because how I'm writing it doesn't give it justice. I've heard all this before but it's the way in which they write it (or maybe that I'm in a place to better GET it) that really speaks to me. It's the usual speech of the present moment being the only moment there is but how these 3 authors so far have been talking about it - it's appealing to me. There's this delicious quality to life if we stay in our bodies and stay with whatever is going on. The "recognition of being" is what gives us rest, awareness, creativity and intuition. Ah, that's beautiful. I think I'm getting that now. I am also gazing upon myself in meditation as if I were gazing upon those kids that I gave birth to: with friendliness and a loving curiosity and wow, that makes a big difference. I am enjoying the moments of "non-doing" of just being there and seeing what comes out of it. It's not easy but it is worth it and it's very enjoyable.
So the books that I'm reading for class so far are:
Wherever You Go, There You Are
When Things Fall Apart
There are more books on our list this semester but these are proving to be very good beginning books on the subject of meditation. Let me know what you think if you read them.