Most of our life in the world is the mind directed outwards. For most of us, this is how it needs to be, but we know there is this whole inner world of ours that is the foundation for the quality of our entire life, and all our relationships. If that inner life is thriving, healthy, enriched, liberated, illumined, then everything we do gets that benefit.
The first day is not as silent as you might think it would be. The invading noises of bats, jungle, and ocean blend in flurried motion to become that deeper internal silence that negates all commotion. Disturbing isolation becomes a comforting meditation.
Neither wild monkeys, nor snakes or other poisonous animal life could dissuade me from staying in retreat, not even these huge reptiles and the fear they triggered in my mind. But now a larger problem occurred.
I sit in the same seat, staring at the same sky, as I have the last three years, on the bones of the morning, fleshing out with joyful diligence my heart’s expanse, that lucid cognizance, the sun’s rays bring to the sky.
Rather than being caught up in the turmoil of life and overpowered by emotions, losing our own seat and sane judgement, we can always stop and settle our heart and attention in a even state of mind.
A poem about experiences from a three year retreat: Lonely cabin in the pines in front, the boundless sky empty-clarity vast as mind behind, the rising ridge a fortress of fearless confidence vast and held, here I dwell.
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The night was pitch-black, the empty sky littered with countless stars. I lay silently in bed, my mind churning with thoughts. I was at the end of three-year retreat in solitude, meditating alone in a cabin in the woods.
Tonight, or this morning early hours, I felt compelled to revisit the memory of a retreat. I share a poem, which is inspired by my stay at Nagi Gompa, Nepal.
Darkness retreat is for the yogi who come to a point in life of readiness to go beyond the normal pattern of experience that is shaped by habitual concepts of the known. The darkness is merciless, the open sphere of experience is the playground for confusion or liberation.