Myriam Goes Nowhere

I haven’t been going places. And so it is. Myriam goes nowhere. 

In an age of speed, I began to think, nothing could be more invigorating than going slow. In an age of distraction, nothing could feel more luxurious than paying attention. And in an age of constant movement, nothing is more urgent than sitting still.
— Pico Iyer

I’ve decided to face the music and share personal thoughts, discoveries, and meditation adventures, otherwise known as the cushion adventures, in this blog. I feel there is much inspiration to be drawn from raw accounts of struggles and breakthroughs in meditation, and likewise of their direct and indirect impact on daily life.

I’ve been writing online for nearly 3 years now, and I’ve been muzzling myself more often than not for a litany of reasons. (Maybe a future post?) As a result, my inspiration has dried up, I have let censorship and what-will-they-think? win. I needed to figure out a way to get my juices flowing again. Radical self-acceptance seems to be the most promising path so far. For the traveler and curiosity-driven me, admitting that I go nowhere is the most radical act of self-acceptance I can do. (Wow, did I just write that?)

Truth is, I’ve been sitting still since 2006, and somehow it doesn’t get easier. I have recently been at odds with my practice, and it made me realize that it was time for some change, both on my cushion and in my life. And the first question I need to answer is WHY? Why do I practice meditation? Why do I go nowhere instead of roaming the world and savouring its gifts? Everyone aspiring to start or continue to meditate needs to be able to answer this question, honestly.

The improvements in my quality of life largely outweigh the moments of discouragement, restlessness, and resistance I experience in meditation. In itself, this is an excellent reason to meditate. I have become more patient and connected with the people around me, more aware of my own limits, more comfortable with silence. But somehow, in the quiet of my meditation a little voice has started to whisper. And she says: “Really? Your purpose in this life is far more stellar than patience and comfort, Myriam. What’s the point? Dig deeper.” Patience and comfort are important, but they are not the end goal.

It drives me mad that I don’t yet still have an answer. (Guess I still have room for improvement on the patience thing.) I’ve been digging deeper for a while now, and I’m still left with a broken compass. Somehow, my motivation for meditating is related to my life purpose. And I feel the answers will come as a pair.

Until then, I will write about going nowhere and do my best to laugh at myself along the way.

Here’s a little bonus: Pico Iyer talks about going nowhere.