August 29, 2002

my conversations with earth

some of my most memorable moments during my vipassana course, were the post-lunch breaks…and of course, the almost 13 different varieties of soothing herbal teas (which i plan to write about soon too)…

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it’s amazing to realise how much your mind chatters even when there is no communication with the outside world. you suddenly discover hidden joys in little things, secrets you smile to yourself about, and a smug feeling about the love inside you, that you so much want to share. and then there are also moments when you discover the little mischief monger in your mind.

despite a tight schedule, most of us would try and sneak in whatever exercise we could provide our limbs during the breaks, by simply walking around the areas marked for us. post-lunch, which i always ensured it did not last for over 20 minutes, almost everyday, i walked to the vast green space in front of the women’s residential quarters.

there, i would take off my sandals, roll up my trousers, and sink my naked feet into the lush green ankle-length grass, which seemed to nod its heads under the weight of single dew-drops glistening in the light of the 11:30 am sun. lifting my foot, i’d glide my feet over the soft green blades, letting them tickle me gently, and then put it down on the warm earth again. walking slowly, alive and aware of every silent sensation it created, rustling the grass all over, my feet were drenched to the bone from the all the dew they had stolen…

gradually my co-meditators would return from their lunch too. one interesting observation: some of them followed, taking off their slippers and walking, enticed by the green like i was. others saw the sun shining above, promptly rushed in to get their mats or coats, spread them out on the grass quickly, rolled up or even took off their shirts, and began to sun-bathe. the ones that walked on the grass barefeet were the indians among us; the rest who prefered to lie down on the grass were europeans.

two cultures
one ground
one sky
one feeling
sshhh…

a noiseless twenty minutes later, i walked back to my room. stretching myself on the bed, i smiled to myself and closed my eyes… content with the thought that i had deprived everyone of the pleasure of having discovered some of life’s deepest secrets from the dew-tipped grass 🙂

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