A few days ago, I had a very ordinary yet profound experience whilst sitting in my garden.
I was sat quietly, face dappled in sunlight, sipping a cup of tea when my thoughts fell completely silent — without any intention or effort.
I stayed there a while. Nothing spectacular happened. Just a perfectly still and quiet mind with hardly any ‘thought’ visitations.
And then naturally after a few minutes, the movement of thought began to roll in again, gathering momentum, just like the oceans tide.
For a few days previously, I had been worrying about something. I had a ‘worry’ like a shiny marble, noisily rolling around in my mind. It wasn’t particularly disturbing — more of an annoying and familiar pest.
In that quiet garden, sun dappled moment of ‘no thought’, this noisy marble completely evaporated.
No marble. No worry.
I have experienced many illuminating moments throughout my life as someone who enjoys the practice of meditation & conscious reflection ..
But, what struck me about these simple, quiet few moments is this :
If in the absence of thought, there is absolutely no worry ..
What is there to actually to worry about ?
I could clearly see that the very existence of this worry that had been sliding and knocking around in the corners of my mind, depended entirely on my thinking about it.
No thought. No worry.
The ‘worry’ had no real independent substance, gravity or purpose.
It was just …. ‘there’.
But only ‘there’ when thought was present.
This was a very sobering and consolidating moment for me.
I actually then did a funny little experiment where I tried to consciously pick up that worry and do some ‘worrying’ .. you know, put some real ‘welly’ into it.
But - I just - couldn’t- worry …
A few moments of real quietness in the mind can be so incredibly liberating, soothing and illuminating.
So, there we are. A little tale from my garden on an ordinary day.
Just an ordinary mind experiencing itself as quietness.
And, I am not for one second dismissing or invalidating the ‘act of worrying.’ . The alchemy of ‘turning worries into gold’ is something I have been discovering — but that’s another blog for another day.
I will caveat all of this by saying — I am absolutely no expert, guru or teacher, and nor do I aspire to be one. I am as bonkers as the next person.
I am just your everyday human being who just happens to be very curious and passionate about understanding the nature of mind & reality.
And any golden nuggets of wisdom from my direct experience that I can pass on in the hope they might help someone, somewhere — I will do so happily.
Not sure I’ll ever look at a worry (or a marble) in the same way again !