I have recently returned from spending a week on a meditation retreat. During my time on retreat I noticed, as I engaged more deeply with the meditation practices (as well as the periods of silence and time to myself), how hard I found it to be fully embodied in my lived physical experience – being alive and present to the breath, emotions and sensations that can be found in the body. I often noticed a desire to escape into thoughts or a sense of feeling bored, as if in some way reality was not exciting or interesting enough for me.
I believe there is something of an imbalance in our modern industrial world that has led us to give more energy and awareness to thoughts and cognitive thinking, while neglecting or becoming alienated from our embodied experience.
Coming into deeper relationship to our bodies, in a lived direct experience, brings us deeper into relationship to being in the world, rather than alienated realms of concepts and ideas. Our bodies are part of the world, so by allowing our awareness to inhabit our bodies more fully we allow ourselves to participate in the world and life becomes easier.
Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field. I’ll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase “each other” doesn’t make any sense.
Jelaluddin Rumi – 13th Century