Meditation: “Are We There Yet?”
The scene: a group in meditation. The teacher guides them to “Open their attention”, and “Simply be in awareness”, and observe, notice the thoughts going by, the feelings as sensations in the body…
The teacher starts to end the session and encourages the participants to gently open their eyes.
A student pipes up, “Are We There Yet?” provoking laughter.
He goes on: “So this is it huh?… I don’t know, I’m not finding this universe quite up to my standards.”
“Oh yes? Do tell us more,” the teacher says, humoring him.
“Well, my complaints fall into three broad areas: The Body, the Mind, and Society.
OK, I’ll start with the body. For one thing, it requires constant maintenance, upkeep, feeding, clothing, housing, exercise, sleep, cleaning, repair, and on and on, every fucking day. Not to mention lusting after the opposite sex. It’s so incredibly tiresome.
And then it still doesn’t look or behave the way I want it to, function the way it’s supposed to. It has pains, aches, itches, gets tired, breaks down, gets sick sometimes. And I’m just dragging it around constantly. It seems to go everywhere with me, won’t leave me alone. What a total hassle, what a pain in the neck.
Then society. Jesus. I find it quite lacking, not up to snuff. Doesn’t pay enough attention to me for one thing; I never get enough praise, sex, or the love I deserve. Because I’m special. Not to mention all the money and fame I inherently am entitled to. It’s an insult to my specialness that daily, everyone is running around either looking at me, or ignoring me, totally absorbed in their own self-centered lives.”
He sighs deeply. “OK so onto the mind. What a fucking mess. It’s so erratic, quite errant, chaotic, just not under control hardly at all. I just never fucking know what it’s going to be thinking or feeling next! I mean, give me a fucking break. What am I supposed to do with it? I’ve tried drugs, alcohol, running, mantras, meditation, yoga, Zen, endless TV, porn, and conversations, education, not to mention spending tens of thousands of dollars on therapists, psychologists, psychiatrists, Prozac, life coaches, and on and on. Then there’ve been love affairs, spiritual teachers and books and seminars and videos and audios and travel and you name it. It’s still annoys me day and night, with it’s constant chatter and suspicions and paranoias and resentments and jealousies and criticisms and worries and feeling sorry for itself, the comparisons and arguing and contesting, and has endless questions about why and how and what and where and why again. It’s always going into the past, the future, expecting something, waiting for something, something to happen, someone to come along and save it, then onto some other fucking thing… I don’t get any rest.”