Archive for January, 2006


I know I didn’t write for awhile when I get an email from an old friend that says, “Are you alive?”

All I have really cared about since this past summer, maybe a little before, has been surrender. Halfheartedness seems to be a kind of procrastination. It’s like I forget who I am and start identifying reality with all the images and voices inside my head again. Then I wake up again, after chasing some scheme or another, because it felt like I had some really important moves to make… Because it felt like I was getting shafted by life. Or because it’s sometimes frustrating when I feel an emotion like shame, inspired mostly by years-old habits of thinking, and “All I can do is sit down and meditate.” Yea, as opposed to rail inside your head against God and every person you bump into? Is it really sensible to boil with anger at the poor lady who is serving me vegetables at Hickory House? If I look for a fight, I know I’ll get one… I could even let that be “proof” that I’m “right” if I like… It wouldn’t matter though, it would all only be postponment.

Then there’s the sense of waking up again, and my breath going back to peacefulness. Coming as close as I can so far to surrender, I get to notice that I breathe all the way oooooooouuuuuuuuuttttt…. sometimes for days at a time.

Truly there’s a yin and yang to this, like a pendulum swinging back and forth. For all the moving forward there has to be a balance… a time of gathering, staying in the same place, or even seeming to move backward. I’m told that one can measure the hours spent meditating in this way.

These last two days I had let myself drift deliberately, however. Sunday night I had been doing a kind of meditation where you notice your breath out in the tip of your nose, like you’re sniffing the air gently, and you let your beath sink deep into your belly. It’s a compliment to the Qi-kung and normal meditations I do but you’re only supposed to do it for six to ten minutes at a time to begin with. It gives you a headache otherwise. I decided to go ahead and continue regardless of the headache. After something like an hour of this I had a huge migraine headache. When I went inside the house I was clutching my head. Also, the normal ‘rocking’ or ‘vibrating’ motion that sometimes takes my body in Qi-Kung or in Meditation was too intense. It was less like a vibration and more like having parkinsons disease. I couldn’t stop shaking from it, even having levels of shaking the next day that would be equivalent to normal Qi-kung practice.

I felt terrible the next day, and better yesterday. So I didn’t meditate at all, and I played playstation both evenings, and let my brain go and fantasize about all kinds of nonsense. This morning I began to come back to wakefulness, naturally and easily… like when I first started mindfulness meditation, about a year ago, just noticing when I am mindful, and noticing when I’m not.

What do I mean by “postponment?” Each of us is following our hearts. We do other stuff, sometimes because of the muddiness that clouds the human mind, and sometimes because of past actions. Everything besides following the heart is only procrastination.. in other words, halfheartedness really IS halfheartedness.


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