“I have lived with many zen masters, all of them cats.” — Eckhard Tolle (drawing by michael leunig)
- Pay attention to, and allow a relaxed, alert awareness of, sense perceptions of your surroundings right now, in this present moment; acknowledge what is.
- Appreciate what is being paid attention to; in the process, notice the lessening of the compulsive thinking and reactive feeling identified with life situation, personal history, and stories — these thoughts and feelings are usually insignificant, and often negative, full of dissatisfaction, anxiety, a sense of incompleteness or inadequacy, and they are not ‘you’.
- Turn awareness to the aliveness of the energy field of the inner body (practice: be aware of parts of the body, and postures, without looking at them).
- Become aware of the spaces opening when there are no thoughts or feelings.
- Inquire what enables awareness, now, of sense perceptions, the inner body, thoughts and feelings:
⁃ it is the light of true presence, the essence of you, now, the space between thoughts and feelings
⁃ it is emptiness, stillness, the one consciousness
⁃ it is free of the false sense of self, the illusory self, the habitual mind activity of compulsive thought patterns and reactive emotional patterns
For an hour, the person who purports to be ‘me’ sits, noticing the garden, the leaves, the stone and brick and wood, the trees and the sea behind. Listens to the birds, the creaks of wood expanding and contracting. Lets form dissolve into shade, colour, shadow, darkness and light. Feels the cells in my body, growing, flowing, doing what they must do to be part of the complicity. Imagines the molecules, the atoms, the stars and planets, and all that space, that light-ness that is almost all of them, almost everything. Watches a tiny spider, on the table less than a foot away, try to catch the air currents to weave a web from table to chair, from table to body, fail and slip and climb back up and try again, and again. Feels the warmth of the sun on the body, the coolness of wind and shade.
Kali is laughing at me.