August 20th, 2005

hat

sitting around

most of today will be spent at the zen center learning what to do and when if one wants to do things like come and meditate. their "introductory afternoon" lasts from 1:30 to 5 so I will be there pretty much until bedtime! I had forgotten about this when I took yesterday off thinking I would write all weekend. ah well.

the trick will be supplying myself with coffee. those buddhists only drink tea but there is a cafe located conveniently across the street and between the morning lecture and the afternoon to-do I will have a couple of hours to kill. I could have lunch with the buddhists but I think it costs money which I don't have a great deal of at the moment. the question is whether it costs more or less than a muffin and coffee.

first I'm going for their morning meditation at 9:30. no more instruction for me! I'm ready to take on the real thing! I hope I do it right. they say no one is watching but I don't believe them.

last week it was very difficult to stay awake during the lecture. buddhist lectures are so softly spoken and repetitive that they are very very soothing. right now I am bolting coffee so as to be well-caffeinated for the entire morning. I won't be able to go to the cafe until 11.

I'm oddly excited. you aren't supposed to get excited about zen but this is the first time I've actually felt some sort of affinity to something a large group of people were doing in an organized manner. I hope it turns out ok. so far I'm liking the fact that they are not overly friendly there. I mean they aren't cold and they seem happy to see new people but they aren't all over you with enthusiastic reception which would freak me way the hell out.

time to get dressed. must consider which slip-on shoes.
  • Current Mood
    nervous nervous
hat

break

I decided to come home in between. the afternoon session doesn't start till 1:30 and I didn't really feel like sitting through another lecture since I don't really get that much out of them.

it was hard! I sat for about 40 minutes instead of my usual 30 and I don't know if it is their cushions or the way the priest adjusted my position but ow. I was very proud of myself for not needing to switch legs though. I only made one major move during the whole thing and that was to pull my feet back under my legs because I felt like I was falling backwards after the priest put her hands on my shoulders and gently pulled me back. I don't know if I was supposed to move my whole back or just arch so that my shoulders were further back but I tried both and both were painful.

if I keep at this I am going to learn to sit very very straight and I'm going to develop some muscles in very odd places.

as far as the "point" of meditating goes, I don't feel overly enlightened but it's going to take some time just to be able to do it without undue pain. it still makes me feel very calm though.

so anyway it's about a mile away so by the time this is over I will have gotten my walking in for the day. fortunately it is gray and cool out so I can walk most of the way without sweating much. with luck the sun won't come out.
  • Current Mood
    refreshed refreshed