A friend asked why I would avoid meditation--especially since it was twenty minutes of peace and quiet. His question stayed with me, all day. And when I took a seat this evening, it came up again.
At first, I didn't know what to answer. But, then the old sadness came back....if I sit and do no-thing; if I sit and focus only on breath, or the deep stillness here in this isolated mountain cabin, I am reminded....of all the times that I have felt I was not enough. All the times that I have wondered what mattered? How to connect? How to do something that was powerful and meaningful and full of passion.
Oh, god, that last. Full of passion. I DO so many things--I paint, I draw, I read, I exercise, I call friends, I eat and talk and occasionally all these activities coalesce around a "project," such as a film. But, sometimes, they don't. And even when they do, they don't seem enough.
This is scary and makes me feel small and unimportant and as though I don't count and will disappear. So, I get restless and active and THROW myself into making phone calls, and connections and "making something happen" that will give my life purpose, meaning.
Meditating--sitting still and focusing only on the breath ---reminds me of the exhaustion of this never-ending search for purpose. For meaning. It reminds me of this fundamental feeling of what? I can't say, really.
I do know that if I were my friend, that I would feel sad to know that these feelings surfaced. If I were my friend, I would WANT to spend time with me....I would want to look at the sketches of the morning sun--I would be interested in the activities that called out to me. I WOULD NOT JUDGE THEM AS NOT BEING ENOUGH.
So, I began to say a mantra about treating my own self with lovingkindness. This made me cry.
I drive my self so hard, never enough, never enough. It is an old old and outworn way of being. It does not serve. I can let it go. I can be my own dearest friend.
And what happens if my deepest fears are then realized: that unless I drive myself with an iron will and restless fury, I will not contribute. I will not make a difference in the world. I will not make another movie, or write the book I always thought I would. What then?
Maybe it is time to find out.
I meditated for twenty two minutes today.