I sit in the meditation circle and breathe deeply. The silence is truly golden. My thoughts drift— get the car inspected, mail the birthday gift, make a run to the grocery store. Guided by meditation gurus, I try to let the passing thoughts be just that, passing images, like ships sailing by on clear blue water. The practice of sitting still without evaluating, weighing options, and planning means my mind is actually liberated. The 30 minutes fly by.
After the meditation, those present in the circle take turns reading sections from a Zen master like Pema Chodron, a poet like Mary Oliver or a mystic like Julian of Norwich, We happily wrestle with words and meanings— concepts of belonging, of love, of forgiveness, of beauty, and more. Our diverse worlds come together and we relish the connection. We end on a cloud of understanding.
Exiting; however, we lose our sweet spots, and by the time we head for our cars, we are part of the same pigeonholing, polarizing population around us speaking of “them” with sourness. “Them” being the Democrats or the Republicans, the Christians and the non- Christians, the teens and the elders, the bosses and the employees, the carnivores and the vegetarians, the public schools and the private schools, the rich and the poor, the Americans and the foreigners. And the list goes on endlessly! Thoughts and feelings of them and us engulf our being.