Tuesday, February 11, 2003

Increasing Still-ability

This afternoon, right after lunch, I was standing at the kitchen window watching my now-big-100-pound Newfoundland puppy Georgie bound joyfully through the snow in the backyard. I was munching shortbread cookies. As I finished one cookie and started another, I heard myself wonder, "Why am I eating these? I'm not hungry...and they don't even taste good." The answer was, "I'm having trouble being still," and I knew that it was true.

The last few weeks have been an incredibly busy work time for me. I rush through my morning routine--which typically involves 20 to 30 minutes of meditation, reading, and writing in my journal--do a quick version of yoga (which really negates the whole point of yoga), and talk to God on the run, in the car, in-between paragraphs as I write. I don't feel distant from God, but I sure haven't given him the focused attention I usually do. As I stood there crunching cookies, though, I suddenly understood the frenetic cycle I was in...running from one thing to another, tapping my foot and thinking of the next thing, jittering, planning, moving...

The problem with incessant activity is that there's no listening time, no clearing in a mind that rests, no receptivity to new, healed, or blessed perceptions. There's simply a fast management of life as I perceive it, navigating through deadlines, getting the kids fed, trying to plot the fastest way to school with the least traffic. I suspect that making stillness a priority once again--perhaps especially in the midst of such time pressure--will give me focus and rest and a knowing that I miss when I'm running through my days.

So thanks for the cookie, God, and for the realization that went along with it. I'm going to find a clear spot in my afternoon and just hang out with you for a while.

Blessings on your day! :) k

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