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This post could also be titled, “Pondering Instability.”
As this Libra Moon man wonders about his future – moving for and toward grad school, entering the world of professional counseling and body-psychotherapy, whether or not to pursue relationships at all – I come to the conclusion that I must, if at possible, just relax and rest in “don’t know” mind.
So far, I have been blessed to have met many incredible mentors, spiritual teachers and Western coaches / bodywork instructors. And you know what the most potent advice I have received is? No? Of course not. Well I think it would have to be, “work on yourself first and foremost, then if something good follows, you will be in right relationship to it.” I think this is along the lines of, when you create the causes and conditions for blessings and abundance, then of course those results will follow. But in my (speaking “Astrologese:” Libra Moon conjunct Pluto, Venus in the 7th house trine Pluto, Pisces Sun in the 8th square Neptune in the 5th) relationally-deluded case, I tend to work on myself for a few days at most, and then, once a tiny bit of light and fullness creep in, I leap off my cushion and dive back into life wondering, “are you the right thing / situation / place / job / woman for me?” Ugh! Dislike!
So what do I need to do? I need to be aware of the tendency of the afflicted / discursive mind to sneakily distract me with anything – whether it be a new virtuous-seeming financial scheme, or a new potential relationship, or an adventure to India – my mind tends to create stories about any and everything it can get its grubby little hands on. On aggregate, it is actually a very humorous situation! That is, when I allow myself the time to step back and reflect on what I have actually been thinking for the past week or two. The healthiest response is to laugh out loud! And then attempt to pause the goofy mental merry-go-around. But don’t worry, I have been meditating and receiving such instructions for long enough now that I realize one does not stop the train of thoughts, rather one changes their perspective toward said train.
So why don’t I just sit down on my cushion every day and start to develop a more stable and reliable mind? Well, because something seems to have changed within me. There are some days where doing just this is my perfect medicine. And yet there are other days when doing this leads to pains in my belly which I usually associate with trying to push too hard and / or too fast. Overall though, I think spiritual practice would be best. I need to do a retreat, with someone who is very skilled at doing retreats (subtext: someone who is quite disciplined) and just let my mental adornments fall away. But with my schedule, this is not easy.
But back on the tempting and distracting story of relationships theme… I am planning to head out West in about a year to start graduate school in or near San Fransisco, provided I get into the schools of my preference. So this leads to the automatic conclusion of: why would I want to start a relationship in the meantime? This would be guaranteed to cause harm – whether to me or her or both. Because I have yet to meet many women in the Central Virginia area (who live here) who could easily be in a breezy, love-you-and-then-easily-let-you-go relationship. But let’s be honest, why haven’t I met many of these young, light, airy / fiery dakinis? It is because I only meet people who are relative reflections of myself – and therefore I am the one who cannot be in a relationship like this at this time, so I need to penetrate through my delusions of relationship-grandeur as soon as or before they arise. So here I sit, just waiting and attempting to practice confident patience around life’s many choices. And realizing I just teetered on the edge of yet another pit of mental conceptions and then promptly fell in. So this is me peeking up at you from down here. Can you help me up?
Luckily or not, I have a decent job which provides containment. I am not able to rush off to a foreign land, even if an incredible teacher or sublime teaching is happening. Heck, I’m not even able to rush off to Asheville North Carolina to visit friends (a five or six hour drive one-way cannot be made in a relaxed manner within two or three days!). So I have made the choice to be in a more-structured lifestyle than in the past, which prevents me from making (or I should say acting on) impulsive decisions. A job where I get to interact with many different types of individuals (various reflections of my “self”) and to observe my internal reactions to them. I get to practice being fluid and light on my toes in nearly every moment. So you might say, that if I so choose, I get to do some secret spiritual practice at work – that would be the ultimately profound and deeply secretive practice of… wait for it… simple mindfulness at all times.
Where is my mind? What am I choosing to focus on? Do I actually need to listen to this gossip-filled conversation right now? Who am I choosing to spend time with? How am I reacting? Did I really just kick that door out of extreme frustration and angst… I mean… that only happened once. 🙂 Yes, a part of me dislikes being “caged” like this. But that is the part of me I am slowly starving and releasing. The discursive part of mind which I am slowly building a solid cage around. Caged in choosing not to be romantic with a beautiful woman. Caged in being unable to drive off to Frederick Maryland for a Dharma blessing to add to my already significant collection of Dharma blessings. Caged in practicing renunciation. I think that perhaps this inner-cagey-ness is for the ultimate good.
As I review these words, I chuckle, knowing it is going to be okay. And all I can do is seek after the true nature of my heart, and practice loving self / others where appropriate in the meantime. AAAaaahhh…