Meditation is Not Escapism


Sometimes while ending my meditation at the beach I will slowly begin to open my eyes only to find that there is nothing there. The mind has temporarily forgotten its labels and “sand”, “ocean”, and “sky”, are, for the moment, without description. Free from the bounds of conceptual reification, consciousness just sits with itself. The “I” that thought it was going to sit down and do some meditation is now reduced to a momentary experience of being-ness.

Soon the material constructs begin to build once again. The mind, drawing lines around the infinite, starts to bring shape to the shapeless, and before long the walls of time and space are firmly fixed. Fixed enough for a “bird” to “fly” through the “sky”.

I am reminded that this is a great illusion; a beautiful one, and sometimes a sad one, but an illusion through and through. The invitation is to meditate, to pass through the veil so much so that the illusion and truth are no longer separate. The dreamer and the dreamed are seen as one.

Meditation is not escapism, as some think. It is realism. Our beliefs and concepts are, by their very nature, false. They are temporary, and not one of them can be universally agreed upon. Outside the confines of beliefs and concepts, reality awaits.

Here, beyond uniqueness and individualism, we can all touch the universal. Since this space is free of boundaries and opposition, love is here in its full measure. We can come to meditation for all sorts of reasons, yet I always find love and happiness to be the central call in all our pursuits. Love and happiness are frequently hidden from our view by imprisoned imaginary objects that are supposed to release contentment when acquired. Of course, it is not the object ripe with love but the perceiver, our very selves that are innately brimming over.

It is quite counter-intuitive to find this love and happiness already at our door, without threshold or effort, and free of objectification. As counter-intuitive as it is, this does not mean difficult. All we must do to acquire freedom and enter into our fullness is to decide not to be ruled by our mental constructs, the self-imposed divisions, categories, and dualism. Instead, we must give into the heart, give into intuition, give into being.

On this journey we may meet many interesting people and discover many fascinating things, but not one of them can be as illuminating as the moment we let go of the path, let go of the journey altogether and decide once and for all to discover ourselves.

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© 2020 Cayce Howe

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