Wednesday, February 29, 2012
starting here, being here
It really is all about cultivating the ability to be aware, and I don't mean hyper vigilant or super sensitive, just aware. The first growth of moss after a cold winter is so vivid, so green, so alive in its context of dry decay. Yet it is also the fallen leaf that draws my eye, the sense of total equanimity in its fall and landing, no judgment, no grief over its new curling, decaying form. That, juxtaposed with the intensity of the moss, stops me in my tracks. And it is my tracks that keep me going like a treadmill made of desires, away away away from the present moment and lost to my self. Even with the errand of walking the bucket of kitchen scraps to the compost bin I was like a mist without present form, drifting until that moss and resting leaves caught my eye.
So how to start here, no matter where "here" might be? I know that I cannot rely on external impulses that really just spark my reactive nature. It has become clearer and clearer that I must seek from within to find that sense of being that can focus my attention. Each breath is ripe with possibility when it comes to inviting focus, and cultivating the ability to be aware and stay present here and now.
Exhale without changing anything about the way you exhale. Allow the breath to slip back in without making any changes in the efforts or the action. Where are you now? Okay so there's a bit of self-absorption in this attentiveness, but keep your eyes open, with a soft focus. Keep your ears open allowing sound to find you from near and far. Keep your attention on the incredible but effortless inhale arising from each exhale.
Just stay here if you can as you walk slowly, mindfully. Notice the expansion of your inner spaces on the inhale and the lengthening and spaciousness of your exhale. When your mind has wandered off to watch a movie in your head, or begins blurring the present in order to see the future, just bring your attention back to the exhale and observe the arising inhale. Creating the seeds of mindfulness, you may find this present moment is fuller than you could ever have imagined with your mind.