Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Arising and Passing...

Today we did prayer at practice and then flowed into meditation. We’re at a good space now where if I don’t say anything then the kids know to just focus on breath in and out of the naustrils. For some reason today felt right to take the next step. As we were meditating I told the kids to now not only focus on their breath, but also be conscious of not moving any part of their body for the next few minutes – meaning no moving their legs up and down, no moving their hands, fingers, head, etc. I did let them know if they felt a dying urge to move something then they can go ahead and do so.
After meditation was done they shared their thoughts. Vicky shared his experience, saying that he was doing good, but then some type of itch came on his face. After trying to not move for over a minute, he finally had to give in because the itch felt too strong and he moved his hand up and scratched his face.
This led me to an example that Goenka Ji always gives during Vipassanna. That if there is an itch or sensation on our body, it will not remain with us for the rest of our lives or even for the rest of the day, if we don’t attend to it. So I was telling Vicky and the kids that next time an itch comes, to really try hard to fight it and don’t pay attention to it. Let it arise and pass. Just watch it. This is the journey of life and all that exists. Arising and passing. Impermanence. If we are able to watch it come and go, we can really take away most of the suffering we are all going through.
We then continued on a conversation of Buddha and his primary teachings of impermanence and equanimity and how important it is to understand this concept. I do hope to dig further into this topic through time with the kids, but for today we had a great introduction.
After this discussion, Bharat raised his hand and shared a story where he was once being bit by an ant. Instead of flicking it off and itching the bite, he just observed it and right at that instant, for some reason or another, the ant stopped biting. Also, he didn’t rub it or itch it, so the bite didn’t actually become worst. It was nice to see his connection with our discussion.  
I’m excited to see how and when we can extend this conversation on impermanence and balance in the future for the kids to digest.
Continue walking.

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