Why can't I stop my mind and find stillness?
“Stillness does not come from stopping the mind from doing its thing, although seasoned meditators will experience seemingly eternal moments where there is absolutely nothing going on. Stillness comes from residing in the eye of the storm, by not allowing the whirlwind of mental phenomena to drag us round in circles. Stillness comes with surrender and acceptance.” Martin Morrison
I find this quote beautifully expresses the difficulty of seeking stillness outside yourself. It reminds me that stillness is only truly found in the heart of whatever it is that is swirling around. There is nowhere else, there is only here and now.
I had a personal reminder of this recently, while with small children in a large gathering of folk participating in a thanksgiving celebration. A young child I was responsible for began picking up and throwing petals around, which is usually a job reserved for one of the leaders of the celebration, who had deliberately scattered them as we processed around the room. I was unable to stop the child, and frankly began to panic, wondering what on earth people would think.
Fortunately, I looked up. I found the only person who seemed concerned about what was happening was me. I took a deep breath and allowed myself to be disturbed, and yet not to take action, beyond some gentle guiding in the direction we were walking. I found myself finding joy in the child’s wonder and spontaneity, just as soon as I stopped judging what was happening.
It was a small reminder that stillness really is not someplace else. It’s right here, right now. Sometimes it gets very obscured, however good we may perceive ourselves to be at self-management. Letting yourself feel, and standing firm in the eye of that storm is important, and it’s freeing.
What is happening within you today that vexes you? Can you let it be there and fully feel it, knowing it will pass through and away?