Atmosphere

 

It is interesting how the content of our experiences goes into particular “atmospheres” which then color all experiences. Yesterday, I found myself temporarily on the inside of contractions triggered by someone putting down the Big Mind process. Today, I temporarily went on the inside of contractions triggered by apparent shortcomings of another approach.

And a part of the fluidity of experiences is to allow it all to be and change on its own, and also allow immersion into it because that too is part of the flow.

I find it equally interesting to explore how it is on the “inside” of all this as it is to explore how it all arises within and as ground or space. How it is to temporarily identify with it, and how it is to allow that particular identification to go.

The stream

There was one particularly memorable moment this morning. I allowed myself to go fully into it while walking through a beautiful park, in the sunshine, with the birds singing in ecstacy over the spring. Of course, it all became filtered through the darkness of grumbling about the shortcomings of the teaching of this particular practice. There was little space for any enjoyment or appreciation of it.

And my mind went to all sorts of other things that was not right with the world, to the extent that when I arrived at a beautiful stream going through the park the first thought was I bet that stream is full of pesticides… Runoff from the property of people seeing a manicured lawn as a higher priority than the health of themselves, their family, neighbors, pets, other animals and the local ecosystems.

And then I let go of it, and came to the larger space this all unfolds within. It all becomes just part of the landscape. No need to identify with it. No need to be only on the inside of it. The content and the context are both there, and there is no “I” inherent in either.

Condition of our human self

Another aspect of this story is the impact of our physical condition. At this point, I was relatively dehydrated which made it easy to go on the “inside” of this contraction and forget about the context for a while. My body/mind system was already a little run down, so it allowed more easily for this temporary identification.

When there is a more stable and clear realization of selflessness, it doesn’t really matter what condition our human self is in – as long as it is alive and serves as “vehicle” in the world of phenomena. The context is as clear and present as the content.

But before this, the state of our human self seems to impact how easy it is to release from exclusive identification with particular content and come to context & content together. And that is of course why yogic practices are recommended (including specific meditation postures), along with basic health care guidelines.

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