Sunday, March 16, 2008

Meditation

Every moment of my life is vibrating with activity. Even in instances where I stand in one spot for a while and seem not to be doing much of anything, it’s a given that there are multiple processes going on in my mind and numerous things I’m paying attention to. I’ve always been in awe of people who are totally about their business. I have a lot of respect for people who have every detail of their lives in order. Anymore, those people seem to only exist on television. High power characters that multitask and weave all the details of their lives and work together without dropping a stitch are fun to watch, but I expect that their proficiency is pure fiction. I know some people who are very involved, and very very, good at what they do, but all of them forget things and make mistakes.

I’ve read about those who forsake the world to concentrate on study and meditation and the idea of clearing the board to focus my mind on one thing is pretty appealing. At the moment, the closest I ever come is when sometimes late at night, I sit alone at my kitchen table and read in the silence. But, if I pay attention, a dripping faucet, the compressor in the refrigerator, the furnace, and so on, break the silence. If I concentrate with all my years of sound-guy training I begin to locate ever-smaller sounds around me, which I suppose is a form of mediation in a way.

The idea of sitting in a cell, untying a silk knot in my head for five hours like a Tibetan monk or resting in prayer on a hill like Saint Patrick is becoming ever more appealing to me. Forget enlightenment, I’d just like to sit still and be quiet. The ever more hectic schedule of my life looms up like a scolding study hall teacher though, and seems to remind me that any moment sitting still is a moment that I could be working, or cleaning, or paying attention to my children. I’m at least comforted by the fact that though I seldom pause from my frenetic life, my time is filled with things that are for the most part worthwhile. I earn my bread, I wash the dishes, I fix things that are broken, I love my babies, and even when I sit like a zombie on the couch, I’m investing in my relationship with my equally taxed and harried wife.

Now that I’ve looked at it, some measure off contemplation seems possible. If dropping everything to just sit and think becomes a task with some value attached to it, I should have no problem working it in to the schedule. It’s kind of encouraging, because I’ve been told over and over that devoting some time each day to God is one of the most important elements of ones faith. Most Christian self-help books, and even most Christians I speak with suggest rising early to read and pray. My problem has always been that I hardly ever rise at the same time each day, and usually have to sprint to engage my first task. The end of the day is equally amorphous. Rising anywhere from 3 am to 9 am and finally finding my bed anywhere from 11 pm to 6 am makes it difficult to develop any sort of regimen. But, with the Bible on my Palm Pilot and an a attention paid to locate empty moments, I’m hoping I can develop a devotional life in the spare, unclaimed minutes of my life.

1 comment:

  1. sometimes equally has hairy?
    sometimes?

    oops read it wrong. yep. equally as harried. right.

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