Day 1 – The Beginning

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Zencast 1 – Meditation Timer (1o mins)

And so it begins…

Of course with the tough stuff. Meditation. For 10 whole minutes. My body doesn’t shrink at the thought, which is good. I’m getting better at accepting it should be done.

I have meditated before. I was very concistent and regular when I was practicing meditation with Sri Chinmoy practitioners in Manhattan. But then they started calling me at work asking why I’d missed a session. I stopped going. I stopped meditating.

Since then I’ve been sporadic about meditating to say the least. I always heard the best time to meditate is early morning when you just get up, but I can barely get up in time for work never mind to sit in a cross legged position and fight to stay awake. It doesn’t matter what I try I just can’t seem to persuade myself to get up in the morning to meditate. I’ve tried doing it after work, before bed, before dinner, at work in boring meetings. It doesn’t matter. It just won’t stick.

My yoga practice has stuck apart from when dealing with bouts of illness. My writing practice has stuck with the help of motivation to change careers and Buster Benson’s 750 words. But meditation. I don’t know. I think I’m mentally blocked.

So, we start today with 10 minutes. Not too bad. I can do 10 minutes at the most on good days. I normally get stuck at about 3/5 or 8 minutes depending on what’s taking place in my life.

I start the podcast. Position myself on the edge of my computer desk and begin staring at the infinitiy symbol conveniently place at the bottom of my Mac keyboard. Thank you Mac :D I rest my hands on my knees to keep me grounded. To humble me in the face of what I’m embarking upon. I hear the introductory music and settle my mind and body into the fact that I’ll be here and still for a good while, and accept that at some point my body and mind are bound to resist. The music stops playing and I wait for the bell. None comes. I now have 9:13 left on the timer and I haven’t started meditating. Shoot. That’s not a good start. I focus on infinity again and loosen my focus.

My minds starts to race thinking of all I need to say and remember for this blog post. I remember to tell myself to come back to infinity and breathe. My mind continues a play by play account of the things my body is doing. At least I’m aware of what’s happening now though instead of day dreaming about the future or reliving the past.

After a few seconds I feel the urge to wet my lips. Great. I should have made sure to use lip balm before I started. This will drive me crazy. Then I need to swallow. Don’t know why, I just do. Funny how your body does that when you’re trying to be still. My eyes start to fog and blur my eyelashes into dark chunks in front of my vision. I keep bringing my focus back to infinity and my breath. My forehead starts to itch. I breathe deeply and focus on infinity.

The birds sing and twitter outside the open window. Someone starts up a circular saw. Or wait – could it be a lawnmower? I bring myself back to infinity and the breathe.

I wonder what time it must be now, but my ipod screen has gone to sleep. I bring myself back to infinity and my breath. I’m reminded of the Pema Chodron quote I read in @gwenbell ‘s ebook Digital Warriorship,

So even if the hot loneliness is there, and for 1.6 seconds we sit with that restlessness when yesterday we couldn’t sit for even one, that’s the journey of the warrior. – Pema Chödrön

and I realize that I just have to keep coming back to the infinity symbol no matter what goes on in my brain.

I notice the word ‘command’ below the infinity symbol and the song Commander by Kelly Rowland ft. David Guetta becomes an earworm in my head,

but gets me to thinking about the fact that when I’m dancing nothing else matters. It’s just me, the rhythm and the music. It’s my personal favorite form of meditation. And what a great place to do it – on the dance floor. I haven’t been dancing for a while though. Why is that?

I come back to infinity and the breath. My feet start to urge me to twitch. They want to lift their toes up off the ground. My right foot starts to move. I come back to the breath. Then both feet take movement into their own hands and lift an inch off the ground, flexing as they do so. I put them back on the floor and breathe. After a few moments my hands, and in actual fact my entire body, starts to come alive surging with energy that just can’t wait to move. I sit with it for a few seconds, but when my fingers start to lift off my knees from the amount of energy surging around I change position into what I’ve heard called the Buddha Mudra, bringing my hands together in front of my navel. The energy dissipates.

I focus back on infinity and my breath. I think that it must nearly be time for the 10 minute meditation to be over. The music suddenly starts playing again my ears. I open my eyes fully and move my body around. When I toggle the ipod control pad I see the timer is now at 0:56. That means I haven’t meditating for… yes… 8 minutes. Not quite the 10 minutes it could have been. But meditation for 8 minutes today is 8 more minutes than I did yesterday. So acceptance is the key word here.

Then I look around and enjoy my surroundings when suddenly a thought pops into my mind – tomorrow, Day 2, is a meditation timer for… yes… 20 minutes! I’ve never done this before. Not once. Maybe 15 minutes at max. How will it be? What will come up? I guess tomorrow only knows.

It’s a new day.

It’s a new journey.


P.S. This post was originally written 3 hours ago, but got lost in the ether for whatever reason when I published post. Hence I had to re-write it to much frustration. Acceptance really is the word of today. I won’t say I lived extremely wisely. But I tried. That’s all we can really do.

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