Sitting at the back of the room, the auditorium, the hall, at the end of an aisle. I am always one moment away from leaving.
I am not sure why. This has been brought back home to me during my recent attendance at the Mindfulness Meditation conference in NYC sponsored by the Omega Institute.
I seem to reject gurus in favor of my own clumsy seeking. This was also brought home to me when I picked up a book on Transcendental Meditation (T.M.). This differs from Mindfulness in one fundamental way–it depends on the repetition of a mantra.
But as interesting as T.M. seemed, as popular as it is, as much as it has been scienifically validated to produce peace of mind and brain changes, I was turned off by one aspect of it. Everyone receives a private, personal mantra which must be obtained by a "guru". The exact nature of the mantra is cloaked in mystery but is based on Sanskrit. This notion that another human being would "grant" me a mantra just seemed wrong to me. Perhaps this is similar to being uncomfortable with the idea of a priest or intermediary in dealing with Spirit.
Perhaps no one else would understand this reaction. But I just don't believe another human being can offer me something as powerful as a meaningless mantra with vibrational power.
I just find the quote I use on the first page of my book which is ascribed to Siddhartha Gautama, Buddha too compelling…..Do not believe what you have heard. Do not believe in tradition because it is handed down many generations. Do not believe in anything that has been spoken of many times. Do not believe because the written statements come from some old sage. Do not believe in conjecture. Do not believe in the authority of teachers or elders. But after careful observation and analysis, when it agrees with reason and it will benefit one and all, then accept it and live by it.
Now clearly this approach does not lead to a community of spiritually like-minded individuals. And perhaps that is why I find myself a solitary seeker at this stage in the journey.
In my case I doubt that I will ever find "the truth". Instead, like an onion, I hope to peel away levels of personal ignorance.
Seeking is a journey not a destination. It is a process rather than an event. It is a verb not a noun.
Although a solitary seeker I desire to share my thoughts and observations with others. I welcome comment and criticism. I fully believe that I am always a breath away from discovering some new insight. And I am open to welcoming others who share this approach to their own pesonal quest.
Rather than a leader-follower relationship, I perceive the metaphysical journey as souls travelling in tandem, sharing, exchanging ideas and experiences but essentially alone.
And I'm perfectly fine with it.