1 Dec. One word.

This morning the temperature dropped below water’s freezing point. I meditated at 6 am in a cold dark living room. I had to put a winter hat on, otherwise sneezing and runny nose would have ruined my meditation. I lit a candle and an incense stick next to my Buddha statue. I like the candlelight and the smell of the incense. I sat for a half an hour, and it went well. I was able to focus on the breath pretty much immediately and keep my attention there for a mind-blowing 30 seconds at a time. I remembered to keep my spine straight and my dhyana mudra was spotless. When I realised I was slouching, I adjusted my posture immediately.

Before the sitting I remembered – my meditation is equally depended on my diligence as it is on the infinite number of ever-changing conditions I will never understand, so I can just relax, sit, try just a little bit, but mostly wait. What I’m saying is that the moments of tranquillity are equally the result of my work as they are a gift. But I’m probably completely wrong.

I’m listening to a podcast where Sam Harris discusses vipassana with Joseph Goldstein. It’s weird to hear a person as eloquent and intelligent as Sam Harris being completely confused. The only thing I enjoy about this recording is Joseph’s New York accent (especially in words like “often” and – the most glorious one – “because”). It sounds like a music to me, it reminds me of how Henry Miller and Peter Steele spoke. But the content of the podcast confuses the hell out of me. Among many other topics, they spoke about Dzogchen. A few days ago I learned that Susan Vega practices Nichiren Buddhism and that Tina Turner practices in Soka Gakkai tradition. So many fancy words I don’t understand.

It got me thinking – can I squeeze everything that I’ve learned so far about Buddhism as well as through meditation into one word, one ultimate, the most useful skill both on and off the meditation cushion? The one word I’ve come up with is “patience”. Patience means: wait, give it a minute, give it a time, step back, observe, don’t react, don’t judge, rest assured that everything will either pass, die or terminate on its own.

8 thoughts on “1 Dec. One word.

    1. Thank you. Yes! Especially Josh Korda has been for me a great source of wisdom, knowledge, sense of humor and a New York accent for the past few years!

      Please let me try to return the favor. You probably know them all, but my other favorites are: Kusala Bhikshu from Urban Dharma (he speaks about the basics in a low soothing voice), Bob Thurman (who speaks with passion about nuances of Buddhism, especially the Tibetan Buddhism), Ajahn Chan from the Buddhist Society of Western Australia (the wisest and cheerful among them all), and of course Alan Watts. I also like Buddhist Geeks and the Imperfect Buddha Podcast.

      Thank you again! Please give me a heads up when you come across something interesting! Have a great day!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi, sounds great. I should probably do the same. They say that meditation is not a one-man project. It is definitely for me. I did sit a few times with a various groups in Dublin this year and I absolutely loved it. Sharing meditation with other people is wonderful. It’s a whole new experience. I would also love to have a teacher one day, but for me the travelling is a major problem. Anyway, good look with your practice and with finding your own teacher and sangha!

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I love your definition of patience, Adrian. Ive been following you for a while and when I find my own meager little meditation practice faltering, I read your words and they inspire to keep going. Thank you! Xo

    Liked by 1 person

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