Thursday, June 30, 2011

Being With the Knot

For years, before I knew about clinging, I used to hate the part of my body where tightness could be felt so strongly. Right in the pit of my stomach, a knot to remind me that not all was well. Intuitively, I knew there was more to the knot than just nerves. And I fancied a time when I could be without 'it'.

Then along came mindfulness practice. Under the lens of meditation, the knot made itself felt even more. And along with it my dislike of the physical sensation around it. Thanks to Dharma teachings, I could make the connection in my head. Knot equal clinging in the mind to what is not worth clinging to. 

From intellectual understanding to realization, though, lied a great divide. The more I sat with the knot, the more I hated the thing, and the stronger its grip. Another more subtle form of clinging had inserted itself. Deluded by the validation from the teachings, about the worth of a knot-free state, I mistakenly chased after an idea in opposition to the truth of the present moment.

Lately, I have had a change of heart about the knot. Sitting this morning, I could 'see' its sacred nature. This is the place where truth resides. This is where gentle investigation needs to happen.


  1. yes, to love even the knot! the knot as reminder, as red light. the knot as a part of you. interesting image this entwined thing, never ending loop, can be made tight or loose. and yes, nothing outside. thank-you for sharing your insight!

  2. Thank you Carole for 'understanding' and sharing what I felt.

    Gift of spiritual friendship.

    With much gratitude,


  3. Great insight! The knot area (hara) is where I let my mind settle when I do zazen. I think this makes it easier to go there when things get rough and fear reappears.

  4. Yes, giving the knot the place it deserves.

    And agree that the knot is more obvious when strong unpleasantness and aversion arise.