Today doesn't quite feel right. For the past few weeks I have been teaching a graduate seminar for 8 hours on Friday (13:00 to 21:00) and then 8 hours on Saturday (08:00 to 16:00). We ended the seminar last night (Friday night) at about 23:00 so my mental clock is messed up. I feel like I should have arrived at the university between 6:30 and 7:00 this morning and that I should have started teaching 90 minutes ago. Instead I have been sitting in the kitchen drinking coffee and looking at the trees in in our back yard (back forest), and feeling strangely guilty.
If you were raised like I was then you were taught that time marches forward and that not a second should be wasted because once gone, that second is lost forever. I'm afraid that way of thinking has all too often transformed me from a human being into a human doing. So this morning I practiced being a human being . . . I entered the "I am" state.
Besides sitting and drinking coffee while gazing at nature the other way that I practice being is by meditating. Learning to meditate is a lot like learning to walk a tight rope, something I decided to learn how to do over 40 years ago. Here are the instructions I developed for myself when I wanted to learn to talk a tight rope:
That doesn't seem so hard does it? I just requires lots of practice to cycle through the steps 3-4-5 loop over and over. Meditation is pretty much the same. Here are my meditation instructions in case you consider yourself to be a non-meditator:
Give it a try if you have never done it. Five minutes of practice is a good length for a start. You will probably find that you have a monkey mind, one that jumps from thought branch to thought branch and that's alright. Be kind to yourself and every time that happens just return to step 5 above.
I have found that when my mind is too focused on being a human doing that it is hard for Goddess or God to get my attention. Only when my mind is quiet do I seem to be receptive to Their promptings. Although many physical and psychological benefits accrue to meditators, for me it has become part of my spiritual practice.
Peace my friend,
I'm Dr. Dave, an eclectic shaman. I lived and worked in Bolivia and Peru for over six years, where I and was trained by Andean Shamans, and today practice eclectic shamanism.