A great adventure

An adventure, lost in time

Those times so vivid in my mind now, times when an hour seemed like a day, a day seemed like a year and Summer felt like a lifetime.

Times when a ride out on my little bike to the next village was a great adventure.

Times when I was awake, vibrant, unencumbered by conditioning.

It seems dream like, may be not real, just a fleeting memory of a time when I was young, the past, gone, never to be experienced again or so I thought….

Life raced on, for some strange reason for years I stopped myself experiencing, I closed my heart, closed my mind, closed my ears and tried to close my eyes as often as I could to block it all out.

Pain, grief, loss, joy, happiness, anger all pushed away or held on to so tightly, not allowed to pass through.  I didn’t know there was another way.

I didn’t know that those times, those endless days, unencumbered, alive and awake, they were still there, just under the surface waiting to be discovered again.  Re-born again into existence by simple, beautiful awareness.

So ordinary, so simple, so easy to miss, no wonder for years I didn’t see it.

Little moments in time

The coffee with my friend.  My ears open, I listen to him speak, there could be a thousand people talking around us at that moment, but all I hear are his words.  My mind is nowhere else but there.  I fully taste the coffee, rich, bitter, strong.  I feel my feet on the floor, grounded, solid.  We seem to drop out of time. For a while our time there seems endless.

The drive to work.  I feel the hands on the wheel, my bum on the seat.  Everything considered.  I turn the radio off, I want no other sound, just the car’s engine.  I hear the gears changing, I do a little wave to lady who has just let me through and mouth the words thank you, I see her smile but she doesn’t wave back.   A car shoots out of a side road right in front of me, I have to brake, for a second I feel that familiar knot in the stomach but I let it pass through, the stimulus has gone, it is over, I don’t need to react or respond.  I wind my way across the lanes, the sun is just poking its head over the horizon, the trees like skeletons, bare, waiting for the season to turn. Just at that moment, I feel more alive than ever, unencumbered.

A walk in the garden.  I let the dog out, he wants to wander around and sniff the myriad of different scents he can pick up.  I look out, not much happening in the garden at this time of year, but wait that little palm I planted last year, crikey it has grown.  A flash of white catches my eye in the bed at the side, snow drops with little heads dangling. My ears pick up on the sound of the little Robin singing away. There is another bird call further away, one I havent heard for a while. I can hear it over the sound of the traffic, a crystal clear ‘keeow’ shriek almost.  I stand on the chair to get a better view over the fence and to the fields beyond the edge of the town. There, high above the trees are two buzzards soaring.  I sit for a while and just listen, a beautiful simple moment in time.

Moments that are disguised in everyday life, I have nothing but gratitude for finding them again.  Those times that seem to last forever.

Moments that make you see that there is nowhere else we have to go and nothing else we have to become.

The great adventure is right here, right now.  It always was and always will be.  When we think we have lost it, there it will be right under our feet.

Be well

Be happy.






Time and patience

“Have patience, plant your feet firmly on the ground. Wait for the tide to ebb away and there you will be, where you have always been but you didn’t know it. Right here on the shore, unwavering, happy and more alive than ever “

Journal entry December 2015

This journal entry always makes me smile.  Odd because it was a particularly painful period of my journey into mindfulness but it was as if the answer was calling out to me at the time, wait, be patient, all will be well.

Mindfulness and meditation can be pretty difficult at times. When I first started practicing, I desperately wanted to get rid of pain, anxiety and stress.  I thought that I had the answer to all of this.  I would sit in meditation for 20 minutes a day and all my dreams would come true.  Little did I know.

Around about the time of this journal entry, I was really struggling to meditate, my legs would go stiff, I would get cramp and it was a test of will to carry on with it, my mind completely distracted.

Luckily there was something inside telling me to just be patient, to stick with it, that this is a lesson, there is something to be learnt from sticking with it.  I put my trust into the practice and let it do its work.

It is so beautiful, so vibrant, so vital, I find it hard to put into words at times.   Mindfulness and meditation can turn your world around if you just allow it.

It has taught me that my mind is chaotic at times and that is ok, that’s just how it is.  It also has taught me that my mind also wants the chance to be peaceful and to examine what it is like to just be at peace, to just breathe or to just listen to sounds. Simple and beautiful.

It has taught me that I am stronger than I think I am.  If the proverbial hits the fan, whether it be in meditation or in everyday life, I am much more comfortable now just letting it be, to just stick with  it and be patient and wait for the tide to ebb away.

My initial desire for the practice to rid me of all the aches and pains of life  like some sort of end goal, well the practice turned that all upside down.  It has helped me to see that the aches and pains are all part of life.  Anxiety and stress still come, but my relationship to them has changed.  I am not clinging on to them as much or trying to push them away. There is less of a battle going on, they come and go like clouds rolling by in the sky.

Occasionally they will take over and  I find myself in the old spiral downwards, but the difference is I can can see it happening and can take steps to come back, a kindness and compassion kicks in.  It is the practice at work.

My regular readers will know this, but over time the story gets quieter, my posts have probably got shorter, things get simpler.

In truth I have found it harder to write about this year, there is a simple beauty in this practice that words cannot adequately provide.  It is completely experiential.  Truth and wisdom emerges from the silence. If there is a constant narrative going on, or lots of chatter going on in my mind, I know I need to practice some more.

So the end of a year, I thank the practice for the things it has taught me, the things it allows me to see so clearly.  There is more to come I know, always will be, this is a practice that will stay with me for life.

“If the tide comes back in, you will always know now what is underneath.  Plant your feet firmly on the ground, be patient, what is underneath those waves, beneath the commotion, is something quite beautiful”

Journal entry December 2017