Monday, May 3, 2010

Third day at the course: Friday

I lay awake for a very long time that Thursday night before finally falling into a fitful sleep.  I awoke Friday morning. exhausted and with my mind made up.  I was going home!  It lightened my mood a little to think I would be escaping all this pain, discomfort, and suffering.  Kind of funny now that I type that and think of the first of the four noble truths.  "There is dukkha (suffering)."

I went to breakfast same as the morning before and returned to the dorm to take my shower and get cleaned up.  Of those that left the course, almost all left during group meditation.  I think part of it was shame for each of us.  Another part was the desire to reduce the interruptions and facing those that would be staying behind.  As I waited for the 8 o'clock bell for group meditation, I sat on my bed and decided it would be nice to have a good long meditation before hitting the road.  Even to this point, I still have not lost my love or belief in meditation.

I was not concerned with leaving while the others were not in group meditation, so I decided to do the group sit and then pack my stuff and hit the road.  I entered the meditation hall.

It was the easiest meditation I had had in an extremely long time.  The time flew by and before I knew it Goenka was singing the closing meditation chant.  I was so surprised, I decided to stay for the next meditation period and see what happened. 

And that is how I learned to live in the moment.  If I thought ahead to eight more days before I could see my family again, the loneliness became almost unbearable.  The idea of sitting for eight more days, all day long, every single day, filled me with anxiety and fear.  But if I just thought of sitting through the next period and then I could leave if I wanted to, got me through the remaining days.

The schedule repeated itself each day and I easily flowed into it with my one-session-at-a-time attitude.  Before I knew it, it was bed time.  I climbed into bed and slept the best I had since arriving.

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