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Sunday, July 15th, 2007

The 11th Day

I haven’t come to this 10 day silent meditation retreat to become enlightened, I’ve come because even though I’ve got a sweet and loving inner dialogue, I find there’s often a lot of clutter and noise in my mind, and I began to wonder if my mind could do with the equivalent of push-ups. I mean, I take really good care of my body, and my mind’s been feeling a little flabby these days.

I am sure you can relate: in an unchecked mind, the voices can be self-defeating, and deafening.

Even if I am not after enlightenment, per se, a little Nirvana is always nice. Nirvana is a Sanskrit word that literally means "to cease blowing,” as when a candle flame ceases to flicker. I like this version: a still, sweet center, which remains intact, no matter how the storms rage around you. It’s not about getting the winds to be silent, but to find the space in you that never moves.

So, as I sit in meditation these 10 hours a day, I get really good at observing what is happening now, not what I wish was happening now. It’s kind of like taming a wild animal. You’d expect a wild animal to snort and protest and charge up against the containing walls. But if you were an animal tamer worth your salt, over and over again, you’d extend your hand with the kindness and effort of training.

I don't develop hard-willed discipline, I develope loving kindness toward myself, on a bodily-integrated level. I get to experience, directly, what it is like to come back to my center, with loving kindness, amid the raging storms of my mind, amid the sweet and intelligent wanderings of my mind, amid the very real pains and panics of my body. When the storms rage, I can be sweet peace for myself. I have the direct experience of not abandoning myself when the going gets tough, no matter the weather, no matter what life, my mind or my body throws my way.

As I get more prowess with the practice, I realize how much I love and respect my mind and body. I realize how I deeply trust myself to wander as well as self-correct. I begin to really enjoy the process, regardless of the painful hours. My mind is toned, on its way to being buff, actually! I notice more space, less clutter internally.

I feel like I am flirting silently with body and mind, with no witness but myself.

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Enlightened Flirting: Taming the Voices in Your Head

Thursday, July 26, 2007
8:00 – 9:00pm EST

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Feel incapacitated by the viciously self-defeating voices in your own head?
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Posted by LiYana at 2:17 pm

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