Lately I’ve had trouble shutting out the world. I’ve been longing to escape my over-fed, too-busy brain, this brain that can’t stop THINKING. Each day I’m bombarded with not only my problems, but the planet’s. I’m hooked into too many devices with too much multi-tasking.
Yet the other day, I happened to watch a video with spiritualist Deepak Chopra that taught me something so basic, so easy, and yet so vital, I was amazed. At first I didn’t believe such a simple act could work, but it did.
Go within to find peace, he said. Find a quiet place and close your eyes.
I sat back at my desk pondering this. Could it be that simple? Just getting quiet? Just closing my eyes? Why not, I thought. What did I have to lose?
I found a quiet spot in my bedroom, my favorite place in the house. I sat cross-legged on my bed, closed my eyes and grew still.
I started hearing sounds I’m usually too busy to notice – the wind rustling the birch trees, my cat’s paws on the carpet, and the beep-beep of a truck backing up somewhere along the road. Gradually I began to relax.
Soon I was able to access a part of my mind I don’t visit often, a silent part, the part that simply observes. Deepak calls it awareness, the being in all of us that lies beyond thought, worry and activity. Everything grew still and peaceful. My breathing deepened. Could this be the soul, I wondered? And is what I’m doing meditation?
After twenty minutes, my heart rate slowed, a miracle for someone so nervous and high-strung. The feeling was like returning to a secret room that’s been in my home all along, but I rarely enter.
When I finally opened my eyes it felt like I’d taken a vacation. I saw life more acutely. Senses were sharper – the notes on my son’s guitar sounded sweeter, the sight of a red cardinal outside looked brighter, and the smell of Easter lilies in the kitchen more fragrant. Its like I had stepped out of my life and re-entered. I vowed to do this more often.
Since then I try and carve a space each day to simply be. Do I succeed? Not always. Old habits die hard. I’m still a slave to my devices. I still over-think.
I’ve also learned not to try the closed-eyes technique early in the morning since I’ll fall back asleep. Still, knowing the problem is halfway to solving it. More and more, I’m learning to unplug from my life. I’m learning to find that secret room we all have, but seldom enter.
I’m learning to simply sit back and close my eyes.
Where do you find peace? Comments are always welcome. Thank you for reading and sharing…