March 02, 2009

The Big Sit, Day 8 — Don't jump out the window

Four of us sat together in the office today. Managing Editor Alex Kaloyanides was master of ceremonies as usual. I had a hard sit -- I was anxious and hungry and I was impatient for the bell to ring. But then surprisingly toward the end there was, maybe, a small hole in the clouds and the sun came through and so when the bell did ring I felt good and took my time standing up. As Thanissaro Bhikkhu said in our Meditator's Toolbox (Spring 2007):

When you end your meditation, be very careful with how you open your eyes. Try to maintain your center inside rather than letting it flow outside. Then, maintaining your center, get up from the cushion and keep the center inside as long as you can. As my teacher Ajaan Fuang instructed: 'When you start out sitting in meditation, it takes a long time for the mind to settle down, but as soon as the session is over you get right up and throw it away. It’s like climbing a ladder slowly, step by step, to the second floor, and then jumping out the window.’ -- Metta Forest Monastery Abbot Thanissaro Bhikkhu

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Dina Mac's picture

I went out to the beautiful park near my house to meditate. I had this wonderful sensation that all the trees were members of my sangha. They were already "sitting" waiting for me. I bowed to them and sat down.