Wednesday, February 13, 2008

What's the Rush?

Most of the time we go through the day, through our activities, our work, our relationships, our conversations, and very rarely do we ground ourselves in an awareness of our bodies. We are lost in our thoughts, our feelings, our emotions, our stories, our plans.

A very simple guide or check on this state of being lost is to pay attention to those times when you feel like you are rushing. Rushing does not have to do with speed. You can rush moving slowly, and you can rush moving quickly. We are rushing when we feel as if we are toppling forward. Our minds run ahead of ourselves; they are out there where we want to get to, instead of being settled back in our bodies. The feeling of rushing is good feedback. Whenever we are not present, right then, in that situation, we should stop and take a few deep breaths. Settle into the body again. Feel yourself sitting. Feel the step of a walk. Be in your body.

The Buddha made a very powerful statement about this: Mindfulness of the body leads to nirvana. Such awareness is not a superficial practice. Mindfulness of the body keeps us present.

-Joseph Goldstein, Transforming the Mind, Healing the World
from Everyday Mind, edited by Jean Smith, a Tricycle book

1 comment:

Shannon said...

During the summer month The children and I grab our bowls of cereal and head outside for breakfast on the back deck which looks out into the woods. We sit there for hours just listening and journaling, taking pictures, or doing yoga. It is wonderful and it makes the summer months a treasure.
Great blog.
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Mad Squirrel