Day 85

Style: Personal Sequence
Teacher: Self
Studio: Home Practice

Meditation, meditation, meditation... Easier said then done. Over the weekend during teacher training, we were given a few items of homework and they all involved thirty-day commitments. One of them was to, for 15 minutes everyday, do something we've always wanted to do but never got around to actually doing. Maybe you always wanted to write a book, maybe you always wanted to learn a second language, maybe you always wanted to cook. For fifteen minutes every day you do that and only that. Write a bit, read a bit, cook some food... but do that with no distractions. Focus your entire energy and do it every day for thirty days. I've always wanted to meditate, so it seemed like a good idea. At the time.

Sitting in quite solace surrounded by aspiring yogis, it has never been easier to slow my tempo and focus inward, breathing in and out, maybe gently om'ing in my mind, whatever. My first day meditating in "real life" is turning out to be more of a challenge then I seemed to realize. Now that it's a thirty day commitment, there is no way around it. I will take the time every day no matter what the circumstance. On this Easter Monday, I have no time to be alone. Eventually I decide to barricade myself in my room and lock the door. Soon I settle into a somewhat comfortable cross-legged position and try to focus. Then I realize my sister and some friends are in the backyard having a conversation. My mind pokes and prods, sticking to their words like a magnet as they drift in through the window. Moments later I'm back up, looking for another room. No luck. It's a holiday, people are around, that's all there is to it. Eventually an idea dawns on me and I'm both interested and repulsed. Where can I go where I know I will be undisturbed? What is the only room people don't bother interfering with you? Yes. That's right. The bathroom.

This is weird. I am standing, looking at myself in the mirror, in the bathroom, preparing to meditate. Have I lost my mind? Exhaling with a sigh, I decide that maybe in fact I have, but then again that might make the whole no-mind meditation process that much easier. So there I am, sitting on the cold white tiles of my washroom floor, trying to focus. People are walking around in my house. I hear footsteps, creaking floorboards, walking up and down the stairs, right outside the door, perpetually coming and going. People talk, people yell, people are generally loud. Breathe. Someone knocks something over. Slams the back door. Breathe. Someone calls my name. Someone calls my name again, wondering where I just disappeared to. I figure if I burst out with an aggravated "leave me alone I'm f*@%ing meditating", I might be taking a few steps backwards. Breathe. I don't remember this being so hard. What have I signed myself up for? I can go ninety, a hundred, three hundred days if necessary stretching and contorting myself through hour and a half physical practices, but thirty days of sitting still for fifteen brief minutes? How can this be so challenging?

One thing these yoga challenges have taught me is that, if I say I can do it, I can and will do it. So for the next 27 days I WILL sit down, cross my legs and close my eyes, even if it kills me. And it won't. And I will come out, back into the light of day. And you know what else? I will have done what I said I was going to do. And that successful use of willpower feels good. And finally, if meditating poses such a massive threat, I can rest assured there is something in it worth searching for. Again, there is no turning back.


louise Sattler said...

you're so funny Jesse! I love ya!

Tomomi said...

It's funny how meditation can make you realize how busy and loud our lives are. Love it. Good luck!

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