I discovered while being unemployed for the first time ever if you don’t count the year I had a newborn, that I need routine in my life. It pained me to admit it. I had thought of myself always as a free spirit chafing against the status quo.
And there I was unmoored. Of course, the financial uncertainty and need to find a new job colored the experience, but overall, I learned a lot about myself.
Left to my own devices, I am a train wreck. I need structure and ritual in my life.
The COVID years of working at home just really drove this home. That 18 months or so I was here working is time I will never have back. Wasted. I lost the rhythm of my life. I have been uncentered.
The light dominates but doesn’t reach far enough. It’s the first thing a newborn sees.
Light gives us color and shadows – penetrates and reveals.
There are things that hide from the light. Cockroaches of feelings and thoughts that if brought out might destroy us. These stay in the shadows bearing witness but silent. Sometimes rustling so we don’t forget. A haunting of sorts.
The others reveal themselves – prisms and golden archways to the past, to the future. Sunbeams of insight as understanding dawns.
Should we bring those shadow dwellers into the light? Would it destroy them or us? Or are we just repulsed? Is the unexamined life not worth living? Do we need to get the magnifying glass out for all the firings of our synapses? Should every memory be put under a microscope? Backlit and magnified? A hundred times? A thousand?
The cool stone of now, just now, is seductive. A balm for the mind. Some of us actively seek it trying to escape just for a moment, a few minutes, the clamor of thoughts and scuttling of shadow memories. Seeking silence and stillness.’
Now is sanctuary. An absence of worry and fear. Here. Just here. Now. Breathing. The light not penetrating. The slate clean. A return to the womb where we don’t remember, don’t think, where we only have the nurturing of now. The peace of it. Protected from the onslaught of the light and things that scuttle in the shadows.
I have meditated on and off for years. A few months ago, I decided to get serious about it but life intervened and it got shuffled to the wayside. My psyche hurts a great deal these days and i decided it was time to dust off the zafu and begin again.
Zafu is a meditation cushion that I use to sit on the floor with. There’s nothing magical about sitting on the floor, but I like being at the same height as the coffee table which is where I have all the accoutrements of my meditation practice – candle, Tibetan singing bowl and hourglass.
The hour glass is actually 15 minutes which is all I can manage right now. I feel virtuous if I do 15 minutes and downght self-righteous if I turn it over and do 30 minutes.
The meditation space is beautiful. I worked to make it so. Beauty is an important value to me. There is beauty in fine fabrics, symmetry, black sand falling through delicate glass.
Meditation will be good for me. I can feel myself coming back to myself already.