Meditation Part I

Tonight I attended my first meditation at The Center. I guess I went into the meditation with some expectations. All week I knew I would be going so I had been thinking of things I wanted to meditate about. So I figured I would have a good idea of what I would do when I got there. Um, I was wrong.

So I meet up with my friend Eman. He is my meditation/seminar partner. We’re both Pisces, with our birthdays being only seven days apart, so we are a lot of like, with the same issues and quirks and insecurities. We’re both gay and will both be attending the Get Freed Up! seminar in L.A. in June together. We get some coffee and him something to eat and head over to The Center.

Both of us are nervous, which surprises me some. When you go into The Center you can feel the love oozing off the walls and most everyone there welcomes you with a smile and a hug, which is nice but awkward enough for someone as sarcastic and judgmental as myself. I welcome their love, but just don’t know what to do with it yet.

We arrive at The Center and shift around the room full of enlightened people. Our friend Julie is there, big bright smile and all. She greets us and instantly makes us feel more at home. Eman and I stick together and give out hugs as strangers approach. Finally it is time to go into the meditation room. Before that, Pablo, the center manager, gathers everyone and explains that there will be a little bit more of an intro before the meditation begins due to the fact that there are two people here have never been to a meditation before -as he gestures, smiles and points at Eman and I.

Fucking great. Now everyone knows how fresh we are.

The mediation room is a large room, maybe three times the size of my entire apartment. It is softly lit and fully carpeted. Tonight’s meditation is led by a man called Dove. Dove has a warm, comforting voice that could melt your heart. He is tall and soft and makes you want to be a better person. He gathers us into a circle and, because Eman and I are present, explains the process of the meditation.

There are five steps: Opening, when you get into all of your emotions and issues and really work the shit out, Calming, bringing yourself down, Thinking, when you jot down any notes you want to remember when you leave, and Resting, you simply lay on your back and relax. I forget what the last stage is called, but it’s basically the application of what you’ve realized/learned in the meditation in your real life when you leave The Center.

After this overview, Dove asks us to write down what we want to concentrate on during this evening’s meditation. I write that I want to work through the reasons why I don’t love myself as much as I should. That I want to catch my heart and soul up with my mind, that is to say that my head knows how amazing I am and how much I should love myself and the goal is to get my heart to understand that. I want to work through my issues of unworthiness. I want to let go of the past and let the future lie ahead of me, instead of worrying about it. I want to let go of my fear. Fear rules me more than anyone could ever know. I want to let go of my anxiety and appreciate what I have and not what I want, or think I need.

These are very lofty goals for a boy who has never meditated before in his life and isn’t even sure how to do it. But what the hell? Right? Gotta go for gold.

Finally, we all grab a spot in this huge room to meditate in. I hit up the back wall so that I will have support for my back and just to feel kind of out of the way and secluded a bit.

So we begin the meditation. All eyes are closed, the lights are low and music is playing. At first it feels calm. I have my eyes shut and I can feel my self sinking into me. It was a strange sensation. I knew my head was staying in the same position but I felt like I was upside down, almost doing spiritual back flips. Awesome, I’m on my way to self-discovery.

We are getting deep into the opening stage of the mediation. I feel my self getting emotional but nothing earth shattering. And then I start to hear the crowd come alive. There is crying and moaning. Soft at first, but then it becomes intense. There is lots of screaming. (They show us a method of screaming into a towel, which relieves stress, frustration, anger, fear and much more. I do it at work. It helps!)

The crowds outcry for deeper love becomes more intense when the music is at its zenith. The music, by the way, was not very encouraging. They were playing sappy songs by bands like Puddle of Mud and Creed, for crying out loud. A lot of them were upbeat. I wasn’t feeling the music. I need sad sad music to feel, ya know? Give me some Sia or Tracy Chapman, not Caribbean beats.

So I’m listening to all of these people moaning and sobbing and pounding on the floor and crying out. I’m wondering: “When the fuck is my breakthrough gonna come?”

All the while Dove is talking over the music, guiding us through the mediation. With my lack of tears I feel like he is speaking directly to me when he says, “If you aren’t feeling anything, invite change into you. If there is something blocking you, identify that feeling and concentrate on that. Ask for more. Invite change.”

I’m like, “I AM, YOU MOTHERFUCKER!”

Needless to say I’m getting frustrated. So I scream into my towel. I scream away my frustration and my fear. I scream to feel pain and I scream to feel love. And yet still no tears.

By now everyone is in full tilt boogey. The moans and sobbing and heavy breathing and pounding and crying out sounds like an orgy at times and at other time a midnight mass on the eve of the apocalypse. At moments it makes me almost burst out laughing. My lack of movement has become disturbing to me by now. So I begin to think of other things, including what I’m going to be writing in this entry and the fact that I had three delicious vegan chocolate chip cookies waiting for me at home. Deep.

I could feel Dove watching me. Well, my paranoia could feel it. At times I almost wanted to fake some crying and tears and moaning. When I was in high school my friend Janelle and myself used to fake seizures in our local Wal Mart for fun while our friend Norah videotaped. So I knew I could fake something, but I thought that would be contradictory to my goal. Plus you can’t fake puffy eyes.

We eventually move into the calming stage, which, for me, is not much different than my opening. Then we move to the thinking stage, when we’re supposed to write down things that came to us.

Of course, my paranoid ass thinks that Dove is concentrating only on me, so I write just to write. These are the notes, verbatim, that I wrote:

• I can’t switch shifts with Julie on Saturday.
• Why didn’t I have a connection like every single other goddamn person in this room?
• Should I come back next week?
• When the hell is Heroes coming back with new episodes? Damn writers strike.
• I am only writing so Dove thinks I had a breakthrough.
• I wish I really did have a breakthrough.

After the meditation both Julie and Eman came up to me with hugs and I could tell we weren’t on the same level. Both of their puffy sets of eyes told the tale of the tears they had shed. Tears I was jealous of.

Later Eman would tell me that at times he his experience felt like he was on Ecstasy, but at other times he was thinking about how much he needed to get a hair cut.

I spoke with a few people after the mediation and told them of my disappointing experience and they said that was pretty normal. Julie told me that her first meditation was exactly the same and she pointed out the fact that my issues were already starting,

“Look at the way your judging yourself,” she said to me. “You’re judging yourself on the way you meditated, telling yourself you’re not worthy of the meditation.”

Ok then. Next time I will meditate on one thing. The way I judge myself in meditations and other parts of my life and why.

And I swear to God, if I don’t cry and sob and have a freak attack, like everyone else, I’m going to fucking scream.

Into my towel of course.

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January 11, 2008. Life, Me Me Me!, Spirituality/Meditation, Thoughts.

2 Comments

  1. sulochanosho replied:

    A beautiful maiden meditation experience there. The narration is at once super! Ha, meditate and melt, dont disappear. Waiting for Part 2 episode.

  2. Megan replied:

    this is hilarious and cool, and i’m so happy that you’re writing and this website is awesome. and i miss you and i think i’m coming back to sf in a couple months. wanna hang??

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