Last week, I wrote a short essay on the subject of the sacredness of the material world, how in my world view, mind and body are one. I’ve always had trouble with the dualistic view that sometimes pervades Christian and Buddhist thought, that the spiritual self needs to transcend or abnegate the body in order to reach true spiritual depth. I think we’re here in these bodies for a particular reason, to experience this material world through the senses, to learn how being human is to be in these bodies. In my recent life, however, Body and Mind have been a-warring with each other a little, especially in the realm of sleep.
At night, as I am falling asleep, Mind gives Body reminders and instructions: “We’ve checked the alarm clock. It’s loud enough and it’s set for the correct time. You can sleep until it goes off.”
Body has already fallen asleep and missed half the instructions. She’s good at falling asleep the first time.
3 a.m. Body: “Umm. Did we really check the. . .”
Mind: “Yes! Go back to sleep!”
3:20 a.m. Body: “. . .because if we ever forget, then we might not wake up on time. . .”
Mind: “Shh! Just go back to sleep.”
This goes on, every fifteen or twenty minutes, until finally Mind can’t take it anymore, and none of us can get back to sleep, and we get out of bed around 4:30 or 5. We get some work done, and get ready for school, and then, just at 6:30, when we’re about to head out to the car for school, Body says: “I’m really tired. Couldn’t we just take a 15-minute nap?”
This has been the pattern almost every night since school began. Last night, however, we woke up at 4:15, settled back to sleep, and didn’t wake up until the alarm went off. I only hope it’s the beginning of a shift in the pattern.
1. Cheesy enchiladas for supper
2. Making art with kiddos
3. The table is wide. So wide. There’s room for everyone.
4. Lying in the grass on the hillside to meditate
5. The maple trees are bursting into flame
May we walk in Beauty!