Photo credit for Cuban Chair ~ Linda Sangwine
Here's a very potent experiment that we played with in satsang recently! In the petri dish called the group energy field of Stillness, we mixed some wisdom from A New Earth with some wisdom from a Buddhist meditation practice called Tonglen. Tibetan for giving and receiving, Tonglen is simply about taking in unhappiness and giving out happiness. Breathing in suffering and breathing out peace. It's a beautiful practice of compassion. The results of this experiment were very powerful and tangibly felt ~ even more consciousness!
Here's how this went... we read the following paragraph from page 299 of Eckhart's A New Earth outloud and then instead of writing a list of everyday routine activities as he suggests, we spoke the list outloud in the group. Every time someone spoke something, we simply b-r-e-a-t-h-e-d it in together and b-r-e-a-t-h-e-d out peace. Conscious breath. Breathe in the suffering, breathe out the peace.
Eckhart's wisdom ~
"Here is a spiritual practice that will bring empowerment and creative expansion into your life. Make a list of a number of everyday routine activities that you perform frequently. Include activities that you may consider uninteresting, boring, tedious, irritating, or stressful. But don't include anything that you hate or detest doing. That's a case either for acceptance or for stopping what you do. The list may include traveling to and from work, buying groceries, doing your laundry, or anything that you find tedious or stressful in your daily work. Then, whenever you are engaged in those activities, let them be a vehicle for alertness. Be absolutely present in what you do and sense the alert, alive stillness within you in the background of the activity. You will soon find that what you do in such a state of heightened awareness, instead of being stressful, tedious, or irritating, is actually becoming enjoyable. To be more precise, what you are enjoying is not really the outward action but the inner dimension of consciousness that flows into the action. This is finding the joy of Being in what you are doing. If you feel your life lacks significance or is too stressful or tedious, it is because you haven't brought that dimension into your life yet. Being conscious in what you do has not yet become your main aim."
We noticed the heavy, dense, clumpy energy field of these uninteresting, boring, tedious, irritating, or stressful activities as they were spoken and then felt them transform as the conscious in-breath and out-breath happened. Just like alchemy ~ transmuting lead into gold, suffering into freedom! Pure, clear, light, Stillness remained.
Brilliant, effortless and simple.
B-r-e-a-t-h-e in the uninteresting, boring, tedious, irritating, or stressful.
B-r-e-a-t-h-e out peace.
A very profound and successful experiment!