Sunday, July 23, 2017

Kensho, Satori, Working Out, and Oneness

Kensho, sometimes interchanged with the concept satori is generally defined as an insight or awakening. A glimpse into deeper understanding. I like to think of it as a flash of epiphany or "oneness". A connection to a deeper cosmic harmony. I was at the gym this morning listening to "A Stream With Bright Fish" from the album "The Pearl". I've been doing what I call "mindful workouts" lately. Totally focused on the rep and the connection between mind and muscle being worked. Slow, deeply focused repetitions. Not sloppy form, but form that really gets deep into the muscle. As I finished one set and that song was playing I looked out the window at the clouds floating by. In that flash of an instant everything was in synch. The floating clouds, the music, my workout, and my presence. It was all a brief nanosecond of profound harmony and sense of belonging with everything.

It was a great and profoundly serene moment. Everything around me fell away and it's just me in tandem with everything I mentioned.

I've had this experience two other times in my life. They were much deeper and profound than this one, which is not to minimize or take away from the one this morning. The one I had as a teenager I was walking off the football practice field. I literally, for a nanosecond, "felt" the Milky Way. I could see it from the outside. I could feel its rhythms and felt as if I was in all places at the same time.

In relating this to my friend Dan thinking it sounded a bit crazy. He commented, "It doesn't sound crazy at all. I have had two, one on a the lawn I have 5, and another in my grandmother's house when I was about 20. I was alone, looking at a fan rotate."

The sensation almost defies words when it happens. Mine have always been just a second or two. But within those few seconds is a vast expanse of time, I sense. My friend Dan says he sustained his for several minutes, and I told him I wished I could learn to sustain mine for that length of time. But I got to thinking, maybe I'm not supposed to sustain it. Maybe it's fleeting for a reason. A taste, so to speak, of the larger harmonies.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

The Quarter

This morning as I was leaving the gym a woman asked me if I could spare a quarter. Most of the time we're irritated at the inconvenience of these type of people bothering us for change. 

I will assume for argument's sake that her need was legitimate, as the need of some asking for money truly is. This woman's morning, and maybe even her enire day, hinged on one quarter. Twenty-five cents. I started to think about this as I drove away. We get so wrapped up in our own stuff sometimes that we forget about the misfortune of others. There are people in this world for whom a mere twenty-five cents means everything. When I think about my problems (and there are few) I realize they are problems of luxury. My day doesn't depend on the hope of someone giving me a quarter or not. Did this woman really need that quarter? Maybe. Maybe not. But if I'd had a quarter I would have given it to her simply because as one fortunate person to one not as fortunate it's the right thing to do.