“If we have no peace, it is because
we have forgotten that we belong to each other.”
This quote is from Mother Teresa, apparently. I’m
wary when I read things attributed to her. I often wonder
whether it’s really Bob at the liquor store, who, in an inspired but insecure moment, came up with something really beautiful that he wanted to
share. Bob doesn’t trust himself, at the deepest level, to
be unique or worthy, to have quote-spreading clout, so he puts
MT’s name on the idea, hoping others will now enjoy it.
Bob might love meditating.
Why? Because with every sitting (or
standing or lolling, whatever your method is), we sink through layers
and layers of our “not enough”s: I’m not smart enough,
adventurous enough, wealthy enough, young or old enough, creative
enough, altruistic enough, quote-worthy enough, and on and on.
It’s not as though we look these
things in the face as we meditate, it’s more that they soften and
eventually slough off with practice. Over time we learn who we are not, and let that go.
At the same time, we sink gradually
into what we are: compassion, love, peace, hugeness, trust in what
is, connectedness with everything.
These sound like woo-woo lightweight
absurdities. They aren’t. They are the palpable realities that show
up when I sit still long enough to get beneath the chatter-brain.
And when I get down there, one of the
things that becomes evident is that capital-L-Love is what I’m made
of, what every cell is packed to bursting with, and when I open my
eyes, everyone and everything I see is made of the same stuff.
The world, including the parts of it I was not thrilled with before, becomes almost unbearably beautiful. At that point I
understand myself to be enormously worthy and “belonging to each
other” in the most intimate way imaginable.
In this context of Love (or whatever you call it when you get inside), two seemingly opposite things show up. The need to be unique or special disappears. The simplicity of who I am is enough. At the same time, Love moving through me, or me meeting the world with Love, matters more than ever.
That’s what I want to
tell Bob at the liquor store, or the grocery clerk who won’t meet
my eyes, or my friend who feels awkward about teaching yoga for the
first time. We’re gems, all of us.
Is this your experience with meditation?
Thanks to Mother Theresa or to Bob,
both of whom are worthy and indispensable. Thanks to yoga for being all about union of body, mind, and spirit.
Thanks, always, to you for the