Day 115 – why is my mind shouting so loud?

I sit down to set up for meditation. I have completed ablutions, pranayam, internal dialogue, locked the “p” line, which shuts the lower celestial doors (so as not to lose energy out through the lower doors) and my head neck and trunk are straight, my mastoid pivots elongating further up to the sky with each exhale. I bring awareness to the bridge between the two nostrils, I breathe in the loop, exhaling down the front of my body for twice as long as I inhale up the back of my body.

Suddenly manas, my lower mind, pipes up, “Good! Now that I finally have your attention, there are just a few thousand thoughts we need to go over. Are you listening to me? I SAID…!!” It’s like my mind is actually yelling at me, like a naughty child suffering from serious ADD, “AFTER BREAKFAST DON’T FORGET TO BRUSH YOUR TEETH! YOU SHOULD BUY SOME HONEY ROASTED PEANUTS TODAY! COFFEE WOULD BE A GOOD IDEA! IS THAT A HAIR TICKLING YOUR EAR? LOOK AT ME LOOK AT ME… LOOK.AT.ME!!!”

When did meditation become so hard? What happened to that yummy feeling? The floaty velocity and beautiful light radiating from within? When did this become a battlefield? I get out to go for a run. This is now the only place where the meditation comes a little easier. I set up my peripheral vision, regulate the breath and start my slow jog along the river. It is a little later in the morning so less people are about. It is not unusual to notice a roughly dressed man slowly enter my peripheral lense. As I approach, he reaches down to his pants to offer me a free show. Grateful that I am short-sighted and NOT wearing my glasses today, I break into a sprint until I am far away. Seriously, somebody had to ‘cock up’ my running meditation AS WELL?! The good thing is that I don’t let go of the breathing rhythm, despite the suddern burst of speed. Suddenly I am homesick for the sound of magpies in the early morning, my mum’s vegetable soup and the halfway decent mental health system that keeps crazy men (and all their bits and pieces) safely homed and off the streets.

Our teacher is leaving today, so as I catch him to say goodbye, I hesitate to ask but it seems like Shal and Pri want to hear the answer too so finally I spit it out.

“Elizabeth is experiencing a challenge… She is following the steps and going through the set-up but as soon as she turns inward, the mind just gets really loud, like absurdly loud. Isn’t meditation supposed to be fun?”

Knowing my vattic tendency so well, he says that it is a problem of being in a “hurry curry worry” and that Elizabeth needs to really use Sankalpa Shakti, determination and Power of Will. I realise that although I say my sankalpa, I have lost faith in the words. It has become a line. There will always be challenges and as long as manas feels like it is winning, it will start to take control. There is no battle except that I am not letting go and allowing. The good thing is that I have acknowledged, now I need to accept and release. Teacher says this is like taming a wild horse, first you must apply the soft rope, then allow it to run, so it doesn’t realise it is securing itself in the bridle. Offer a sugar cube, rein it in. Offer some more sugar, until finally you have the mind, the horse, your friend, within reach and then, with tender love and compassion, you can begin to direct it.

My internal DJ is playing Wild Horses… by the Rolling Stones.

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