This week had one of my favorite days of the month in it – the full moon gathering with a group of amazing soul-filled folks that I am blessed to now be a part of. It is an amazing group of people in my local area that come together each month to simply BE. We do some musing on the significance of the current full moon, spend extended time practicing zen meditation, share with the group about our experience, and then pig out with a potluck. Amid our harried lives it is a soul-filled way to connect inside ourselves, with each other, and be still. Did I say how blessed I was to do this every month?
Well, this past Wednesday we combined a walking meditation with our usual sitting meditation. For many of us it was our first time doing a walking meditation. We used a short path at a local park which weaves into the woods and eventually extends out to a large lake. So, on a beautiful spring night we weren’t the only people at the park. This is where the story of magic comes in.
Before I get to the magic, I just want to share a little about the fact that we are always influencing those around us. Whether we like it or not, how we are BE-ing influences everyone and everything around us. Not to mention it is the sole determining factor about what kind of experience we have as we go through our days. Have you ever been in a calm, chilled out mood in the morning and then gotten to work only to be whipped into a frenzy of panic and chaos by the first co-worker or client you encounter? If so, you know the power that person had on influencing you.
On to the magical part…
There were 7 or 8 of us on the path, in complete silence walking extremely slow. Each footstep was extremely deliberate and we cleared our minds by just noticing our breath and our surroundings. Not engaging with any of it — thoughts that cropped up, people that passed, or other things we noticed about ourselves or our environment. Needless to say as people on their nightly walk or bike ride whipped by, they did a double take but just continued on their way.
About 20 minutes into our walking meditation we stopped in a small patch of grass on the side of a hill to begin sitting. Simply sitting in a small circle and meditating in complete silence and stillness. Again, simply noticing our breath and allowing any thoughts or feelings to pass through us. (In case you’re wondering, this isn’t easy that is why it is called a “practice” because there is no doing it right/wrong or achieving anything. There is only be-ing with what “is”.)
Here’s where the magic comes in…
Because we were sitting in the crux of a curve on the path, people walking or biking on the path would come upon us fairly unexpectedly. What was interesting is that they could be walking, talking, and laughing up a storm, but once they saw us they got very quiet, respectful, and some even whispered. Their whole energy shifted too simply because of the space and being-ness we had created for ourselves. You could literally FEEL the change.
When we finished our sitting and began to share with one another we all commented on this. It was pretty amazing the powerful effect of a few people simply sitting and be-ing on the side of a path.
To me this experience strengthened my belief that getting clear and getting grounded is key to being comfortable in our own skin and having a great life. Being able to quiet the mind not only helps us to have a great life but influences those around us into a new way of being as well.
Next time you find yourself all scattered, overwhelmed, and stressed out (either on the inside or by those around you) — ask yourself “How am I Be-ing right now?”
I’d love it if you share a little of you notice in the comments….