We are so busy managing our lives, we forget this great mystery we are involved in.
While I have shared my reasons for sitting in meditation before, they came forward quite clearly again. Lately, the calling has been simple. I sit to step out of managing and controlling life. I sit to simply Be. It is a surrendering on many levels that in the beginning years of meditation felt very uncomfortable. I would employ various methods as a way to sustain some semblance of control, to keep returning to the breath or a mantra. This worked for sometime and it is a wonderful way of meditation for many. More and more, though, I am called to relax into just Being. This surrendering of control feels more and more like a homecoming even when the moments I meet do not feel comfortable or pleasant.
Apart from the abstract aspects of practice, there are some very practical reasons to make time to Simply Be. The constant managing of life can be quite exhausting. It appears in both subtle and obvious ways, but nonetheless requires effort and energy. It can even become a way of avoiding or quickly alleviating our anxieties, instead of leaning into the opportunity to grow and learn from them. In the process of controlling life, we are not as fully available to the life that is. Perspectives begin to narrow if we are compulsively attached to seeing things as we wish for them to be. For example, when I come into conversation and relationship prepared and attached with views and opinions, I am less likely to listen to what is being offered by another and what is arising in my own heart. Mark Nepo often describes showing up unprepared and open as a way of taking an “exquisite risk” in life. We show up and listen with the “willingness to be changed by what we hear”. Our perspectives can continue to inform us without weighing us down.
Ultimately, if we are constantly in the trance of controlling life, we might wake up one day to find that we no longer feel aligned with our Heart or a deeper purpose of Being. I don’t say this to belittle the human condition. To the contrary, I share this to personally acknowledge my own human conditioning in a sincere and gentle way.
With each moment of sitting in surrender, I hope that such moments may find me in the midst of my day, especially when I am spinning my wheels against the currents of life. While this can feel scary, it can also open us gradually or spontaneously to wisdom, understanding and our way in the world that feels in harmony and deeply aligned.
Allow by Danna Faulds
There is no controlling life.
Try corralling a lightning bolt,
containing a tornado. Dam a
stream, and it will create a new
channel. Resist, and the tide
will sweep you off your feet.
Allow, and grace will carry
you to higher ground. The only
safety lies in letting it all in—
the wild with the weak; fear,
fantasies, failures and success.
When loss rips off the doors of
the heart, or sadness veils your
vision with despair, practice
becomes simply bearing the truth.
In the choice to let go of your
known way of being, the whole
world is revealed to your new eyes.