The age old Buddhist saying that life is suffering isn’t far off. F. Scott Peck said that life was full of challenges, and that with discipline, we could meet the moment and solve them. I had a teacher named John Beaulieu who said that life is a process of meeting the challenges to evolve our souls. I think we actually need to digest life as a process. We often become overwhelmed by the experiences we encounter and they then become like a residue that sticks to us and colors all of our footsteps and encounters. I think we crave feelings of cleanliness, to have direct moments of being in present time. This feeds our mind, body, and soul. I would venture to say that the biochemistry of being is probably the optimal orienting influence of our vitality, health, and ability to explore and unfold into life.
I love the idea that life begins in each moment anew. It gets me to wake up and start all over again. I reinvent my life and resource myself as if nothing came before. Forget about where you have been and what you have done. Not that it isn’t significant, obviously it is, and let be where it is, resist bringing it into the present moment. Let go of yesterday when you contemplate today. Let today be a new moment that you are unfolding into.
My morning practice is filled with clearing my body and mind and tuning to the life energy of heaven and earth in all directions/dimensions. The result I am looking for is a sense of cleanliness of mind and body. Sometimes this just takes a few minutes, sometimes it’s longer, and then it can even become a day long encounter. When I get to a place where I feel fresh, yesterday recedes into the behind space and the moment becomes new. That is when I begin to contemplate where I am and what is important. Anything you bring into a space of cleanliness and neutrality gets a fresh burst of life energy.
We can empower our lives by contemplating cleanliness and neutrality. Just a little bit each day ends up being a lot over time. I like to take a break when things become gnarly and think about neutrality. Getting to neutrality allows everything to fall into its right place. Worries and over-thinking recede when neutrality is established.
I once was meditating in a monastery in the jungles of Sri Lanka. The mosquitoes were having a picnic with my blood. At first I would swat and swat, which didn’t help my contemplation. Then after some days I thought; “Why not let it be?” So I practiced allowing them to do what they would do. At first it was like watching something evil and doing nothing about it. Then after a while, I became really aware of every part of the encounter. I could feel its little feet, buzzing wings in the air, and maybe even have a sense of its sentience. At one point, I started to feel how it would find a place in the pore of my skin and lower its nose needle into my blood stream and take a sip. After that, my sense changed and I released the mosquito and it let me go. For the rest of my stay, I no longer had any issues. My meditations became empowered and it seemed like I became more of a part of the jungle and the world around me. I felt truly neutral and enlivened. If you asked me, I would say that I wasn’t being bitten any longer. Or if I was, it was no longer an issue. What really happened could be a great topic of discussion and dialogue. I know that life is full of challenges and distractions, and that we need to deal with so many things. And, finding a way to honor things the way they are can help to support the natural evolution and flow of life energy through them. ~ Gary