Friday, January 15, 2010

Accepting what is

I'm sure I've written about this before: I seem to belong to that class of people who are unduly sensitive to or influenced by what they see. Which means I was taking a risk yesterday by volunteering to go with a friend to see the new movie Avatar in 3D.

It was hard, I won't deny it: there was way more violence than I'm comfortable with, and the underlying assumptions -- or should I say, reminders? -- about the lengths to which our society will go to assuage greed were equally horrifying.

But I loved the color -- of course -- and the idea of a world where people understand the essential oneness of life and can physically connect to it was enchanting. I'm just not sure it's enough to postulate that such a world exists, or that there might be some of us who are capable of crossing over into it.

Because there was still a sense of insiders and outsiders, of good guys and bad guys, and it bugged me that the bad guys had no redeeming features, and that the only way to overcome their evil was with more killing. On the other hand, if the two civilizations had managed to somehow strike a balance or achieve a truce without all that firepower the lines outside the theater might not be so long (even in mid afternoon!)

When I left the theater to drive home through the dark and the pouring rain (never my favorite thing to do) I was still under the influence of the movie -- much of which depicts the heroes flying around on giant pterodactyl-like creatures -- and as a result my car felt almost alive under me. So when I was reading Eckhart Tolle this morning, and being encouraged to stop and get a sense of some nearby inanimate object, I could better understand what he might be getting at.

Reading Tolle's observations about the connection we can come to feel in the wildness of the forest, it brought me back to images of the movie, and so this shot -- of a remarkably anthropomorphic tree -- seemed to speak to me this morning.

We are so surrounded with life, and yet our minds keep lunging forward into worry and anticipation, or back into regrets and nostalgia. I encourage you to take some time today, not necessarily meditation time, just a few minutes, and try to be in tune with where you are, with now, with the hum of your computer or the purring of your cat; with the power of the car you're driving or the feel of your seat, or the floor beneath your feet, the warmth of your coffee cup.

There is something amazingly precious about this moment, right here, right now: something valuable in the pain or the challenge that you face; a rightness to things. But we have to stop projecting past and future onto what's around us to feel that sense of connection, that deep openness that comes from accepting what IS.


Maureen said...

Lovely post, Diane.

Louise this morning offers a link to Temple of Sacred Sound. Some may not like the bright visuals; I found the visuals and sounds calming.

Your words, "We are so surrounded with life. . .", are so apt. Even among the graphic images of death in Haiti are many others of those saved and being helped, of life carried out of rubble. Quite moving.

Louise Gallagher said...

Lovely post indeed.

And taking that moment to just be at one in the moment, is truly a gift we bestow on ourselves that just keeps on giving.

Thanks for the inspiration.

altar ego said...

I'm reminded of a bumper sticker from some years ago: life, be in it. Oddly enough one of the things that is helping me be "in life" these days is an effort to relax a particular set of muscles in my body. Because I am mindful of the need to do this I shift my focus regularly to those muscles, find that they are clenched, and then spend a few moments relaxing them and feeling the difference between the two states. I keep wondering why they clench of their own accord (or, more accurately, unconsciously). But more and more I am experiencing that they aren't so tight as they once were, and that checking in with them regularly has made a difference not just in their status, but in the rest of my well-being. Tuning in is more important than the notion gets credit, if only we would train ourselves to make it a practice.