The Grade 5 and 6’s often play volleyball in gym class and I get to participate. I crouch when preparing to return serve. My eyes bore into the opponent on the far side of the net. My arms are extended, ready to bump or volley. Every fibre of Bruceness is alert.
The contrast to athletic focus seems to have started during my long meditation retreats. Sitting in the hall for as long as an hour several times a day, I sometimes felt a “shimmering down”, the falling of energy on my face. It settled me. Long sighs came from some place way deep inside. Sitting here right now, the descending flow is with me.
More recently, in my work online with the Evolutionary Collective, I get to practice with someone for half an hour. We ask each other the question “What are you experiencing right now?” and then see what emerges. In the year-and-a-half that I’ve been doing this practice with many different people, there have been transitions. Away from “How am I doing?” and towards the essence of the person who faces me through the laptop screen. Away from an urgent seeking for something to say and towards an allowing of the mouth to open, and a pause to see what wants to come out. Away from doing it right and towards loving my partner.
If the volleyballer in me is seen as a perfectly vertical line, the gazer into eyes that I also am is a tilting, a wobbling. Sometimes it’s even a gentle fall to the side, while knowing that my landing will be soft. Often there is a sense of being cradled, of some sweet being crouching low to bring me softly to the ground.
Both while practicing with the EC and also just sitting around home, questions can wash over me: “What’s happening?” (No worry, no urgency, just curiosity) “Where am I?” (Being lost and not needing to be found, okay with having no familiar landmarks)
It feels like some entity is behind the Wizard of Oz’s curtain … wobbling me. And I’m very willing to be moved, to be touched, to be influenced as I amble along.
Sometimes I write about things that happened in the past – events, people, experiences, feelings. That’s good. Even better, though, is being in the middle of what I’m talking about right now. And so it is in this moment. I’m disoriented, buffeted by some grand breeze, slumping here and swooning there.
All is well