November 05, 2010
Who hasn't fallen in love while meditating? A silent stranger sitting upright and attractive on a cushion across the floor—obviously your enlightened soulmate. His delicate fingers resting on his lap. The way she thoughtfully holds each breath before exhaling. And we already have so much in common!
Pagan Kennedy has an article in the New York Times about her experience with Vipassana Romance (V.R., for short), entitled "Breathe in, Breathe Out, Fall in Love."
At that point in my life I had never attempted a full day of meditation. I was chain-smoking my way through a series of boyfriends because I had no idea how to be alone. I hated the cold spot in the bed and the empty hangers that rattled in the closet. Which is why I started meditating. I thought I’d try wading into loneliness the way you enter the sea, easing myself into the bone-chilling cold a bit at a time — first toes, then calves, then legs.
Today would be the first time I’d plunge in all the way. I was terrified. But after meditating Vipassana-style for a few months, I also knew how to handle that terror: I would place my fear in a display case, as if it were a diamond, and shine a spotlight on it. Breath in. Breath out. And so this is what I did for hours, until I itched with boredom.
Eventually, I allowed myself to spy on the other people in the room, their shoulders wrapped in blankets, hands fallen open, faces drained of expression. That’s when I noticed him several pillows away: a lanky man in a button-down shirt, his blond hair dangling over a delicate ear. It was hard to make out his face — I was sitting behind him — but I could see that he wore wire-frame glasses that were Scotch-taped at the joint. His corduroy pants had gone bald at the knee. His wrist peeped out of the sleeve, endearingly bony and frail.
Read the rest here.
Have you ever experienced Vipassana Romance (or Zazen Romance or Dzogchen Romance or any meditation practice romance, for that matter)? Share your story with readers in the comments section below.
Image: Brian Rea, New York Times