Exploring life from the quiet places
Update on December 17, 2020: I have now moved the videos from YouTube to my Vimeo page.
Beware of waiting for silence before you meditate
At first glance this nudge might appear contradictory to yesterday’s post, but it is not. I still advocate for the importance of having your own special place where you go to sit. Having such a place gets me in the right frame of mind for meditating and I look forward to being there. However, for me my meditation place is in my home. At times my home is quiet when I choose to sit, at other times it is not. The disturbances can be all sorts of unexpected everyday occurrences and the time of day doesn’t seem to matter much either, though early morning I am less likely to be disturbed.
The risk is to go looking for silence when you sit, of seeing your meditation as an escape from the noise of life. Sometimes that might have a place, but the important thing is to show up regardless of external circumstances. Meditation is not an escape from life, but a coming back to life, to paraphrase Zen Meditation Master Thich Naht Hanh.
If meditation becomes a habit of finding a place to run to escape the noise of life, its results will be conditional. If I am looking for silence in my move to meditate, I will probably find myself also having to deal with the annoyance that I feel when my meditation is disturbed by external interruptions.
The key is acceptance of what is. I am not suggesting that you don’t ask for what you want, less noise, but accept that sometimes you are not going to get it. If you can change it, great. If not, make do with what is and still meditate.
So still look to create that meditation place, but accept that sometimes it might not have all of the qualities that you are after.