This week’s slogan is In Postmeditation Be A Child Of Illusion. Ultimately, this slogan speaks to the need to bring our sitting practice into our everyday life. Many practitioners live a split life. There is their sitting practice and their ordinary life. Their sitting practice may be centered around a desire to practice, an actual daily period of siting, attending a sangha sit and going on retreats. They may be in awe of what they observe during sitting and the insights that come from it and yet they drop everything as soon as they get up off the cushion or return home from sangha or retreat. This slogan points to remembering mindfulness even off the cushion.
We learn to connect with mindfulness off the cushion by practicing looking at life through a child’s eyes. It’s not that children don’t see difficulty and pain. Many children grow up in very adult type situations. The resiliency of a child’s mind, however, is the lack of complexity. As adults, we seem to make everything in life complicated. Its really because of our constant judging and comparing. Over the course of our lives we pick up so much information. The mind is constantly sifting through and applying this information to everything that come into its purview. Children do not have the benefit (or more likely the curse) of having all that information so they see the world through the simplicity of curiosity.
This slogan is not about living in the naiveté of a child. It is about living in the wisdom of an adult with the wonderment of a child. It is about cutting through the complexity of life with the simplicity of curiosity. This is what we do when we meditate. We apply non-judging awareness to whatever arises. Non-judging awareness is where curiosity lives and it is what strengthens our practice and allows insight to rise. If we applied this same non-judging awareness (curiosity) to our ordinary circumstances in life maybe we could see the delusion in some of our difficulties or perhaps see how some pleasurable things may not be worth all the pain they bring.
This week we will consider how we could carry the innocence of a child into our ordinary lives. What would this mean to you? Is it possible for an adult to reconnect with their childhood innocence? Would you even want to? And what does this have to do with lovingkindness; is there anything simpler than kindness?