I was listening to one of Gil's old podcasts while driving home last night from Zen Hospice. In his talk, titled 'Thinking', and delivered in July last year, Gil asks, "Where do you live?". A most important question, well worth considering, which led me to this place:
Do I get lost in "thoughting mind"*, leaving myself exposed to the randomness of thoughts, with all the risks attached?
Do I get swept by the powerful currents of emotions, into the superfluous suffering of unbridled reactivity or moods?
Do I stay prisoner of my body's sensations, and let pain take over your life?
Do I escape into meaningless activities, and forget to be present?
Do I dwell in a place of gentle awareness, one step removed from all those trappings?
Giving myself the space to be free, and the time to be calm.
Between those two, no doubt in my mind . . .
I have the image of awareness, as a bird sitting on my shoulder, gazing at each moment, with great softness:
Where do you spend most of your time? Tell me . . .
* 'thoughting', as opposed to thinking - the automatic production of random thoughts, per Gil Fronsdal.