Feb 5, 2016

CHOOSING SUBTLETY: CURATING OUR INTAKE


“I still don’t understand why you don’t like to listen to music,” my sister gaped, sitting across the table. “It’s not that I don’t like music,” I explained, “It’s that the trade-off is too high for me to do it very often.” I went on to elaborate about how I’m actually a very musical person, it’s just that when I listen to a song, it locks in my head and won’t stop repeating itself for a few days. While I like the song at first, this constant looping isn’t pleasant in the long run. So I tend to stay away from music to prevent it, unless I make the conscious choice to partake and endure having a song linger in my head for a few days. 

Like the first time I started meditating. I was at a 10-day silent vipassana retreat. The vast majority of my headspace was a playlist of a random smattering of songs I had once heard across the span of my lifetime. Music, apparently, is my mind’s default expulsion.

Since I started Heartfulness meditation, I have a better understanding of why this kind of thing happens. Throughout the day, we accumulate impressions of everything we interact with. Occurrences that create a stronger impression, if we attend to them, become more strongly rooted in our awareness and we can continue to entangle in them. So as a part of the Heartfulness practice at the end of the day, called cleaning, I sit and suggest that all the impurities or complexities that I’ve accumulated during the day are leaving the back as if they were smoke or vapor. After this cleaning, I feel light and more balanced. Even if I had a pretty awesome day, there’s a freshness that comes afterwards.
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