Today I happen to be in Boston, Massachusetts. I know its in the news, and no…my particular path never intersected with the Boston marathon, or bombings, or the Red Sox game.
Instead, my contact here was with family. A beautiful funeral, connection with both life and death, being here in the sweetness of people coming together to create a ceremony and love.
Even at a funeral, new life is born. Connecting with relatives not seen in years, learning new things about them.
Last weekend in meditation retreat, I considered death once again, especially since my beloved uncle had just passed.
I love the visual picture of falling through life. As if we are born, and we begin to drop through the atmosphere.
We drop and drop and always, we are falling towards an end somewhere, an unknown point.
Most of us, at various stages, will flail and reach and scream with our arms and legs trying to grasp for something to stand on. Or we hold our breath waiting for impact.
But what if we could relax? What if we could sit back, like we’re lying on a beach, and put our arms up behind us and cradle our own head with our palms.
The “kick back” position. All while falling.
Maybe we’d even close our eyes and drink in the sun, the warmth, or the rain if it were raining.
Falling through life, but without the flailing about trying to grab or brace against the End.
I asked myself who I would be without the thought that I have to find solid ground? That I need to grab, or slow down the fall, or yell, or squeeze my eyes shut and wait?
Who or what would I be if I relaxed? If I just fell, like Alice falling down the rabbit hole, from birth through life?
Nothing to be done. Nowhere to grab. Can’t fix it, stop it, or get out of it.
I remember the James Taylor song “might as well enjoy the ride”.
Today I take a deep breath and hear the silence, and the tapping of my fingers on this computer, and the sunlight dancing through the window.
Yesterday, many people…..today, only me and objects everywhere that are not people.
Both a big wonderful pot of amazing soup of THIS.
Falling (being alive) may be easier in some moments than in others, but when I remember that it is inevitable and beyond my control and natural, then there is nothing to do.
Nothing-to-do has a profound freedom in it.
“But there is the consolation of no exit, the consolation that this is what you’re stuck with. Rather than the consolation of healing the wound, of finding the right kind of medical attention or the right kind of religion, there is a certain wisdom of no exit: this is our human predicament and the only consolation is embracing it. It is our situation, and the only consolation is the full embrace of that reality.”~ Leonard Cohen
Today I relax and leave everything the way it is. See if you can, too.
Just leave it alone for a minute. And you probably will, if you go to sleep or notice how you get up to get a drink of water, or go out for a walk, or talk with someone.
Your mind may grab it back or try to understand it or ruminate on it. That’s OK too.
Let yourself fall into space, into life, into death.
“Be like the Tao. It can’t be approached or withdrawn from, benefited or harmed, honored or brought into disgrace. It gives itself up continually. That is why it endures.” ~ Tao Teo Ching #56