Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Opaque Silence

Deep in downward dog
Stretching muscles long unused
Living silent breaths

I have for a long time talked about looking for those gaps between thoughts, and how, as you cultivate them they get wider and wider. Once they reach a certain size, you can then crawl through them and spend time in that beautiful world of silence — that world of truth and wisdom, where the nonsense that we usually take for "normal" fades away.

I've seen this from a different perspective lately and want to play with it through this year. As you sit, let the mind quiet down. As it settles and the thoughts start to spread out, leaving those silent gaps in-between, look at them. And, as usual crawl into that silence. This is nothing new.

But, as you take your meditation out into the world try and see it in a different manner. As you go through your day, take time, every now and then, to let your mind quiet down. Stop what you are doing; let the thoughts spread out, leaving those gaps of silence. Instead of picturing yourself crawling through the gaps into that silence, envision the gaps being black screens. The reason they appear dark is not because of the silent nothingness behind them, but because they are black, completely unreflective screens, covering what you 'think' is on the other side.

Maybe, just maybe, everything that you think you'll find inside those gaps is just something you read about. Something you heard about. Something you assume is supposed to be found there. But the truth is, reality is not just what's on the other side of the gap; reality is everything, including what's on this side of the gap as well. Reality is everything. No exceptions. It's not "all or nothing," it's "all and nothing." There is nothing that is not reality. Yes, but there is also everything that is reality.

So, as your quiet gaps appear, notice that those screens block your view into the silence, leaving you to see nothing but everything else. Leaving you to see, now silently, now clearly and unobstuctedly, the vast world that exists around you. Leaving you to see it in all its vibrancy, in all its color, in all its variety — yet seeing it without the thoughts that normally taint the view with the smell of your beliefs, preferences, likes, dislikes, suppositions, and on and on.

As you pass over the gaps, instead of dropping into nothingness, drop into everythingness. Notice the stunning beauty of the world as it is, in all its glorious variety. Notice the colors. Notice the textures. Notice the smells. Notice the sounds. Notice the tastes. Notice everything around you. And marvel. Silently. Peacefully. In reverence.

Then, as the next thought comes by go back to what you were doing, but notice the difference in how you live.

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