For some reason I dig watching documentaries that follow prison inmates in penitentiaries all over the states. I consider how I would try to deal with an extended prison sentence. Some of those dudes are eloquent and surprisingly articulate about creating an outlook that can help them get through an extended stay in a correctional facility.
I’ve given this writing assignment a great deal of thought. I reckon at anytime or place we can all be in a metaphorical prison of our own design. For me it’s a conscious decision.
Sen-t’san wrote, “If you want the truth to stand clear before you, never be for or against. The struggle between ‘for’ and ‘against’ is the minds worst disease.”
Keeping this quote in mind has been a boon in dealing with obstacles from the most minor to the real doozies. If I can put aside judgements, opinions and preferences I am more at peace with myself, my space and my people.
I like to keep in mind another little nugget of wisdom, “You are not your body.” The body can be such a let down or the greatest tool for observing life on every level – from discomfort to pleasure. Yet I can’t let it define me. I do my vinyasa and I run; these journeys have become an exercise in dropping thoughts and staying present through each breath. Letting go of the past and the idea of the future.
If I am not governed by my mind or my body then I am truly free of any old self imposed prisons. This is my daily work. It’s a challenge because of 38 year old habits but I am awake to it.
[imgsrc: anatomy & cubist]