It's just a movie — something every meditator needs to know
If I write about the importance of meditation, I could just string together dull quotations about watching the clouds go by.
But instead I’ll talk to you about my time at the movies.
At least I know myself after all these years. It used to be a joke, I would never go to a scary movie.
Nobody wants to be a wimp.
That’s like saying nobody wants to be remembered as "unable to hold it together."
And when I was watching the new Marvel movie the other day I remembered why.
The scare sneaked in! My belly gripped tight, shoulders up to my ears ... slowly creeping into a pained look on my face.
I sigh it away and laugh, "It's just a movie."
I'm not actually being chased by the spacecraft and my face definitely isn't green.
As the movie progressed, and frightening scenes came, I'd lean forward again in my seat, hold my breath, then I'd remember and sit back in my seat.
On and on it went, until the screen went blank, the lights turned on and I laughed, "Yes, it was definitely just a movie!"
Our main mission in life is to remember. In the words of master teacher Nischala Joy Devi, "To remember who we are in the midst of all the busyness of the outer world and our inner worlds."
In meditation, thoughts show up — don't give them that much importance.
Most of what we think about never happens anyway. Of the plans we make, many don't happen and of the worrying we do, most of that never happens either.
We all experience frustration, like we're the only ones in the world unable to control our thoughts. But our thoughts have been running rampant our whole life, why do we suddenly expect compliance?
So pull back from life a little, watch, and if you like laugh at it.
Be a witness, like a spectator at a movie all the time.
Changing thoughts on a screen. Feelings on a screen.
Until you realize that life is like a movie, a projection from the mind.
WHY IT MATTERS
In everyday life, we flip flop around like we're on the rim of a wheel.
Right now imagine we're watching a documentary.
We’re watching a wheel, and the wheel represents the cycles of life.
We're up and happy, then we start to come down, pretty soon we're under the wheel and something's squashing us. Slowly we come out from under the squash and around and up again.
In meditation, we start to move in towards the hub, the center. The movement around the circle becomes less drastic.
Resting in stillness at the center of the hub, no matter what happens, it doesn't affect us directly.
You can observe the dramas, the storylines and of course, partake in them, yet there's always a feeling of distance.
"It's a movie."
There's a knowing that you're able to sit still and steady.
And that’s powerful knowledge to have, my friend.
ps — The best way to get to the point of meditation, or stillness, is to get to know a technique.