Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A human "being"

I've been given this time and quiet space to do with it what I will and yet I've still to settle on what it is that I'll do. I don't mind being in the 'I don't know' space, but there is part of my mind that demands that I attend to how I will spend my time and the voice that accompanies this demand is getting louder and louder. My friend Steve says 'be a human "being"', rather than a human 'doing'. I am aware that mindfulness is about just being content with the moment and I can do that some of the time, in fact I do try to meditate at least once a day, but, I have to admit that most of my life I've been a person doing and that's where I find my comfort. I suppose that this is the challenge, to be able to let go of the notion that you have to make something in each moment ~ that you must achieve ~ that you must accomplish something with this life that has been given you. I was watching Peter Thompson's interview last night with Po Ling Yeow on Talking Heads (ABC). Po is an artist and celebrity cook who was born in Malaysia, but feels more comfortable in Australia. She admitted that she felt more like herself when she was cooking alone or quietly painting and I have to admit that I also feel most content with myself in this mode, which is not to say that I am not social, for I am, it's just that I value my alone time and space to think, even if some of that time is spent not thinking. I'm always comforted when I hear that other's are like me ~ it must be something about the creative spirit that demands that we have time and space to concentrate on the task at hand, whilst still feeling that we are connected to the wider world through the thing or activity that we are undertaking. Of course the other positive about being a person doing is that you are totally distracted from any aches and pains that you're experiencing and I discovered that was true on the weekend when I was weeding. My body wasn't actually sore until I stopped. What I've discovered is that work can take you away from self and mindfulness encourages focus on self ~ I suppose as always that balance is the ideal to strive for, and yet, as I write this all I can think of is what to do, what can I do, what might I do, what will the day bring. Enlightenment is a challenging path.

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