Counting Down to Day 98 (Day 32) of The Middle Path Makeover – Stillness

I never really notice how much I’ve been moving until I become absolutely still. The movement can be intentional (planned) but it more often seems automatic (scratching, thinking, frowning, smirking, tapping, etc.).

I will need to continue this in the morning after I get a little shut-eye. See you soon.

More on being still…

It’s a tough thing, to be still. And after all these years of practicing being still, it continues to be challenging. Sure it has gotten noticeably easier for me overall, but I have days where it feels practically impossible to be still with the itching and the thoughts coming and going and the sounds of my neighbor’s dogs barking.
Lately what I find interesting, is that my body and my mind now crave stillness. I long to “just be” and sit in stillness with focused concentration.

Several years ago I developed a form of moving meditation which I now teach and is known as Zenful Dance. I founded this practice as the middle ground between Zazen (sitting completely still in meditation) and our crazy, busy lives as we know it where we have the tendencies to float through our days without much awareness of any kind. Zenful Dance, which is movement led by the rhythm of one’s own uncontrolled breath (anapanasati), has become a preliminary step (literally) towards being still. But sometimes I question my own teachings: why must there be a buffer? If being still is what is needed in order to see who we all are more clearly, then why not just be still? I have to assume there’s a time and a place for movement and also for being still. There is value in both. We must make room for both. The common thread in practicing both is to be awake while practicing.

So keep on keepin’ on. Be still or move along. Either way, stay awake!

-The Zenful Blogger

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