slowing down

September 25, 2011

  I terrified;  terrified to take the next step asked by this body.


            Since I am currently unemployed, I am left with ample time to do 10 different things at once. I usually get them all accomplished. But the thing is, first; nine of them are unecessary. Creative and fun, but uneccesary. The tenth item is a ten minute job that gets finised three hours later. Why? Because lots of free time doing nothing means lots of time for the greater “me” to show up.  And wihle I still manage to get in a lot of meditation/bodywork, when I’m not on the cushion, I stay busy to avoid. 

        So tomorrow I’m going to implement a schedule. A dharma friend once facebooked how beneficial sticking to a schedule can be. Monotony and boredom allows all of you to show up. Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, in fact, once wrote said that’s when the true work begins.       

        I waited a week to decide on this. I wanted to make sure this wasn’t just another spiritual materialistic ego trip. But the schedule is genuine. I have the same nervous feeling in my gut as when I’m about to go on retreat. Scared.     

        It happened after talking to Reggie and realizing that I’m definitely going to Winter Dathun. I first thought, “Whoo Hoo!!! I’m going to Dathun!” Then it was, “oh shit, I’m going to Dathun!”     

       Don’t get me wrong, I experience so much joy at the thought of being there. Last time, I went  for a week. This time it will be for a whole month. I remember thinking on the third day of Dathun, “this place is real. People really can interact and exist in this way. I knew it.” I mean, even now just thinking about it, I’m moved to tears at the beauty and powerful experience of Dathun.     

       But, it can also be brutal! Imagine spending your whole life running AWAY form yourself. Whenever you start to experience displeasure, off ya go. Now imagine that same person (me) waking up and meditating. Meditating in a way that invites all those aspects of yourself, physically. Eat breakfast, meditate until lunch. Walk around for an hour and a half, then meditate until dinner, After dinner, meditate for an hour and then go to sleep. In the morning? Rinse and repeat.        

       I felt like a tiny pebble being brutalized by an emotionally/mental tsunami. Knees hurt, back hurt, brain hurt. Organs I didn’t knew existed hurt. But most of all, my heart hurt. It had started to open, and as it did, all the gaping wounds within were not only still there; they seemed to have grown. This is when I met my heart fully for the first time. The “good” and the “bad”.       

      When the storm cleared, I was sitting on a cushion at the foothill of mountains, my heart open and being gently held not only by myself but 110 others taking the same journey. I remember looking around the shrine room, sensing the great stillness, with tears rolling from my eyes in gratitude. Not only for being able to meet a greater part of my being, but for so many others that were willing to do the same. I mean, think about it. A month!!!!! 1/12 of a year. Everyday, opening. Further and further and further, simply opening. ANd 110 folks!!! Really?!!! Away from their families, jobs, christmas, birthdays, etc. To me, that is beauty. To me, that is dedication and compassion for self and others. 

     Whoa! Bit of a ramble there… I am posting this schedule on here as another step. I find that when I post things to the site, I have a bit more resilience in following through. It may smack of ego or looking for attention, but it is neither. This is why I waited a week. So this posting is for me. If someone reading it gets something from it, cool. If not, sorry. I am going to post the link for Winter Dathun. I hope a few will check it out, and maybe I’ll see one or two of you there with a tear of genuine beauty and love. I can wish, right?  

       Daily Schedule:

 500-530     Darkness tea (me having tea with the moon and space, my favorite time of day)

 530-615      Meditate

615-700     Breakfast/hygiene

 700-800    Clean

 800-1200 Meditate/bodywork

1200-100  Lunch/clean

100-300    Meditate/transcribe

 300-430    Free time

430-530    Dinner

530-600    Clean

600-630    Family Sit  (gonna get the kids to meditate)

630-830    open   (iron clothes, plan meals, etc)

830-930    Meditate

930-1000 Moon tea   (having some “calm” tea with the moon and space)              psssstt…. I have a thing for the moon 

1000            Sleep

                     good luck to me….it’s gonna be brutal for my speedy brain.Buuuuut, hugely beneficial. And, it’s about doing what is needed at this moment, right? Well, right now, a lack of speed is being called for. So I’m going with the oryoki, “just enough” motivation for now.

                         Have the most inspiring evening my dear friends. I’ll see you all again….uhm….at free time. Ha..good night.

                       Don’t forget to say hi to the moon. She loves it.



Mahamudra: the Great Space of Mind

” The ultimate compassion that could ever be is a mind that is open and settled. When your mind is opened and settled, then you are entirely responsive to the needs of other people.”                        

                                                         -Reggie Ray

                                                             The Mind of Compassion

                                                             Winter Dathun 2006-2007

One Response to “slowing down”

  1. Elizabeth said

    You’re doing great, Dennis. Acknowledging your fears is a major step. Making concrete that schedule and committing it to the screen makes it not only more real to you, but also brings in other people to take part of the burden from you. Your friends will be behind you mentally all the way. Making the decision and getting started is the hardest part; as you centre down and go deeper into the experience, the peace and benefits will flow. x

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