newest entry 2001-08-08 5:16 p.m.

Meditations on Meditation

I was preparing my curriculum for the meditation workshop I'm going to teach in October, and it dawned on me that meditation is simply self-hypnosis. ("Simply" not "just"--I'm not being derisive or cynical).

In the yogic tradition, we're taught that meditation reveals the true nature of reality, and in the form of meditation that I've been doing since 1989, we're taught that it enables you to transcend thought and reach a...don't smirk...cosmic consciousness. But who knows what the ultimate reality is? It may be there, it may not. What's important in meditation (and religion and spiritual pursuits in general) is what we believe about it, and where we place authority. I learned how to meditate at a time in my life when I was open and felt safe about giving my meditation teacher the authority to teach me, and I have gotten beautiful, useful results from that. Other people may not get the same results--in fact there are many angry people who have not.

You have to believe something, you have to put your energy somewhere, so that's where I put it--in an ultimate reality that's not quite what it appears to be on the surface. And this belief has generated phenomena and observations that support it.

Love is hypnosis...religion is hypnosis...where is God in all this? I dunno. All I know is, it calms me down to meditate and do hatha and to pray, it clears my mind, it lightens my mood and energy level, and it sometimes transforms my physical reality as well.

Marriage: Fun & Games? Aquaplane Says Yes!

Common wisdom sez that marriage is hard work--it's not "fun & games." But I say: It is! A.M.A. and I have fun and play all kinds of board games. Marriage itself is a game with agreed-upon rules and roles. I am a wife now, despite other characteristics and behavior that might run counter that role. It's not easy, but it's fun... and games.

The Handstand Progress Report

Today I went to Park Slope Yoga and found that Elizabeth (see yesterday's entry) was substituting for Melanie. I was there a little early and so was she, so I asked her to coach me in a handstand. I can't claim now to actually be able to do one--she assisted me by putting a strap on my arms and also by pulling my legs up overhead. But I did stay in the handstand for longer than I've ever experienced, and I got the sensation of what a good handstand is. Bravo, Elizabeth. I also felt good about taking the initiative on this one, cuz I'm usually quite shy at P.S.Yoga .

Celebrity Spotting of the Day

As I was teaching my private session this morning, I looked out the window (fourth-floor TriBeCa apartment with huge picture windows) and saw Gwyneth Paltrow sipping a coffee.

The Great Ape Debate Rages On

A late entry in the Planet of the Apes discussion is from my brother-in-law Zorba whose says:

I think everyone is being too hard on this movie. I loved it and I will see

a sequel. I thought when Marky Mark stole Thade's surfboard while they

continued on their voyage up the river to the spaceship was great. Also,

the added Ape/French plantation scene really fleshed out the story. Its

much clearer now. And the final scene where the Ape Charlton Heston was

reading to the human Charlton Heston from the Ape TIME magazine was worth

the price of admission.

Now playing, now reading

I have sunk to my nadir, or rather have been dragged there by my insatiable need for mysteries until A.M.A. gets some more free Kate Ross books from work (he works in publishing). Like the drug addict forced to inhale shoe polish, I've begun reading paperback mysteries with atrocious pun titles. Ths one I'm reading now is Adam and Evil by Gillian Roberts. It's...dopey-ish.

Now playing, a compilation from the Parasol distribution company, with a larger-than-average percentage of good songs. Favorite so far is a track by ex-Sneetches guy Mike Levy. I bought ths yesterday at the Salvation Army in Prospect Heights, where I always get a chuckle over their big sign "Under New Management! With a Whole New Attitude!"

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