Saturday, July 23, 2005

Three layers of awareness: gravity, breath, and light/sound

Three layers of awareness: gravity, breath, and light/sound

Unless you are reading this on a spaceship, gravity is king. It’s one of the big discoveries coming out of the womb. This is new, but it becomes a signature part of our human/ animal existence. We learn to get our head upright, to sit upright, to walk and then to stand. Even crawling, a grand accomplishment, is coupled with an upright head, looking ahead, eyes excited about what kinds of trouble we can get into and explore.

Ah, life. Anyway: what holds us up, is our skeleton, and to be aware of toes and ankles and legs and knees and hips, pelvis and spine, shoulders and arms and head, this is a grand undertaking, gives us a lot to pay attention to and can be a great alternative to the usual places we put attention. Think of this in simple terms as five lines, the two legs, the two arms and the spine to the head. How are we now, held up in gravity. Toes up through the spine? Sit bones up through spine? Lying on the back to read, one of life’s simple pleasure?

Keeping us alive, air comes in and out several times a minute. We can hold our breath for short periods, but it’s a vital and pleasant part of being alive, this breathing thing. We are alive. We breath. That much is taken care of in our animal existence. And to be human, is to be able to be aware of our breathing, as we do it. Even right now.

YEAH, EVEN THIS NOW, RIGHT NOW, we can be aware of breathing and our lungs and our ribs, held up by the spine, ribs and diaphragm expanding and contracting. Breathing and the toes, and all the rest of the skeleton, this we can be aware of right now.

We have eyes to see, ears to hear, again, this is part of our animal heritage. And what if we were aware of seeing while we were seeing and aware of hearing while we were hearing? This we could do, RIGHT NOW, the words of this page, the sounds around you and me, the light and colors in the room or outdoor space in which you read, in which I write. Sometimes smells come to us, sometimes tastes. Touch is a constant, we are always touching the world through our skeleton and gravity which always has us in contact somewhere on our body. Eyes and ears, though, if we are lucky enough to have sight and hearing, these can be the top level of our ongoing meditation: toes and five lines, breathing in the middle, and the eyes and ears on top, helping us to see where we are, RIGHT NOW, in the world.

We are always here, and the details, ah, this is our life. Now.

Might as well know, sense, be aware of our life now, as it is being lived. This seems a good, a grand step toward being happy, this coming to the present of our real reality, the gravity and breath and light and sound reality. That’s a lot, isn’t it?

Such a miracle to be alive.


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