Your eyes have arrived here from many possible places they might have landed. It is a good thing to attend to calm, centered, and focused experience in the midst of the welter of stressful activities culture transmits to us on a daily basis.
In the forty-thousand years since humans initiated the transformation of nature into culture – as marked by the creation of the total-sensory-surround environment of the painted caves – we have brought about both astonishingly positive and negative outcomes. We have provided well enough for the material survival of a large number of members of our species, while we have done very little to alleviate our experience of psychological stress. In the continual quest to satisfy physical needs and desires we have added to our levels of stress at an ever-increasing rate.
The evidence from medical science is clear. The major portion of the illness we bear is negatively impacted by stress, stress-related, or directly the result of stress visited upon our minds and bodies. The dysfunctional aspects of living with incremental increases in stress levels are everywhere apparent. Simply establishing a place and time for stress-free experience is ever-more crucial to our well being as individuals and as a species. Without a calm and focused awareness at the core of our being, we spin uncontrollably toward predictable dysfunction and demise.
In this moment, in this space, there is just this gentle field of photons entering your eyes and mind in the form of words on an electronic page. You need only to be aware now of simple things – feeling the easy rhythm of your breathing and the pleasure of a moment of pure relaxation. This is the calm and centered place from which all inner peace and strength arise. In this state of mind, you are filled with clarity. From here you move forward with elegance, grace, confidence, and power. As you move away from these words on this page and go about the rest of your day, keep this feeling within you. These words will always be here to come back to and remind you of this state of mind. And now, you can bring this calm and focused awareness with you and begin to make your life and the world a better place for us all.
Image: “A Calm Place” painting by Tullio DeSantis, 2010 (detail).