Great seeing some of you on Tuesday! As a small but intimate group, we shared some difficulties and some more relaxing experiences. There is an incredible honesty in pausing to simply observe our moment-to-moment reality. Thank you all so much for joining me in this practice.
One of the instructions I gave on Tuesday was to simply notice if there were any feelings of resistance to the present experience, any desire for things to be different from how they are. I always try to follow my own advise, not only during the meditation but also in my day-to-day life. For me, I sometimes recognize some powerful feelings of resistance towards my sexuality.
When I was twelve years old, I had a brief homosexual relationship with a boy who was at the time a close friend of mine. For many years I was very distraught over the feelings and behaviors I had exhibited, doing my best to simply deny the experience all together. Of course, this response was neither effective nor helpful.
I have shared with you all the practice I developed in the last couple years to acknowledge and explore my suffering. I recognize now, when these desires surface they are often met with resistance, a desperate need for them to not be. They seem to define me in a way that feels unacceptable, a fear no doubt learned from the pressures of society.
This may sounds as though some essential element of myself is being revealed through this email. And in a way it is. Understanding and exploring ones sexuality is important and liberating. However, the intent is not to define myself as gay or straight or even somehow in-between. By simply recognizing and acknowledging what is, I awaken to an essential, infinite reality. Sensation and thought become small, dynamic players in a vast field of awareness.
The desire for things to be different is, of course, normal and natural. Grief, fear, guilt; feeling of inadequacy and rejection—these can be painful and difficult, sometimes even traumatic. But next time you notice some internal struggle or conflict you might try asking yourself, how am I responding right now to this experience? What am I holding onto? What is between me and complete freedom? This mode of experiential exploration can help us to let go of resistance and accept our experience just as it is.
Thanks again to all of you for your kind presence and receptivity. Hope to see you next Tuesday, if time and intention permit.