Meditation is Just Sitting. The Buddha snow globes is a wonderful metaphor in form for how thoughts are a snow storm in our mind and Just Sitting with right intention cal restore clarity. Our mind original state is clear. We are not born thinking. It is our culture that is built on thinking, and when we are acculturated, our minds become a mini-culture. As our culture is disturbed, we are disturbed. Or let me say instead of Me…you.
You are the culture and the culture is you…..until…you lean to sit and let thoughts gradually subside. Thinking never stops, but it can be transformed from a storm to a few flakes.
Using the snow storm as a metaphor, when we get confused, lost, worried, conflicted, and depressed (all the negative stuff), we are caught in the storm of our own thinking, and we can’t see where we are, which is always already Just Here.
When you are Just Here, you are Just Sitting, and you are just meditating. If you try to find Just Here, the thought of finding Just Here is shaking the snow globe. All effort, all trying to be better than you are, which means not Just Here, is shaking the snow globe. When we realize that, meditation begins.
Just Sitting, just standing, just lying down, just walking…just doing what you are doing without thinking about it, without putting yourself outside of what you are doing…that is meditation. We make meditation complicated, esoteric, unobtainable, and a means to an end. When you stand, is standing a means to stand? When you sit is sitting a means to something other than sitting? When you make meditation simple, it is simple. And we do it all the time without realizing that we are meditating.
The benefit in formal seated meditation which has no purpose at all, is to practice Just Sitting. If you are going to be a master of anything, you have to practice. If you are going to master you life, you have to practice Just Sitting.
What I’m trying to do here, as I look at my talk this morning—and I can’t help but notice all the views and interest—is make meditation a part of our everyday life. We are meditating and don’t even know it. Simply put, meditation is doing what you are doing without the foot dragging of thinking.
I just got the brakes fixed on my old truck, and the parking brake was dragging. Thinking is like that. You don’t even know thinking is dragging, so slowing down when in neutral seems normal.
Meditation is doing without the drag of thought. You are doing something completely involved. When you are preparing a meal, you are meditating on the preparation, unless your thinking is resisting and dragging so that you would rather be doing something else. Then preparing the meal becomes a drag, a burden, and there is mild or severe suffering.
When I do this talk, I’m meditating on this talk. But meditation is not necessarily moral. A bank robber is meditating on robbing the bank and the cop is meditating on catching him.
Can you see how this understanding makes meditation workable. When you are doing some household chore, be mindful of what your thinking is doing. Are you just sweeping the floor, or is your body sweeping the floor and your mind is ahead of sweeping doing something else? Meditation is when the mind and body (action) are doing the same thing.
Now lets look at seated meditation. When you Just Sit, your body and your mind, which is your intention, is just sitting. Now you can notice how your thoughts are a drag. Seated meditation is when you can play the game of sitting and not sitting. You sit, and you notice thoughts that won’t sit. You become aware of the drag, and when you are aware of the drag, the drag disappears. Awareness of the drag of thinking is meditation, is Just Sitting.
Well, lets continue this meditation on meditation. When you are just doing what you are doing without the drag of thought, you are happy with the doing, but if you start wondering if you are happy, then you break the meditation. Meditation is a timeless activity because when you are not thinking and judging and analyzing what you are doing, you are not in time. You are time. You are meditation. You are atonement with action, with doing, and life is doing, so you are at one with life.
Children a natural meditators, but as their cultural identity is formed, they have to identify with their Thinking Self which divides them against themselves. For a child play is meditation. This is another way to understand meditation and why adults have lost it. Meditation is play. Play is surrender to what one is doing as a creative act. When we play at doing, we take the serious thinking out of it. Play is action without the drag of thinking, without that Thinker who can exist only in time. Play is timeless.
Meditation is timeless, a hole in the serious thinking mind. You can’t get there by design; you have to just fall in.