Space and Silence

I was in half lotus, sitting on the dirt. I had found a spot where there was no stone or underbrush that would press too hard into my bottom ankle. As I lifted my leg up, over, and in, on top of my other thigh, I breathed in. The dry scent of sage and crumbled basalt injected into my nostrils and each breath slowed my attention down to the immediate environment around me. There was a small shard of glass, I now noticed, only two feet away. It was easy to breathe and let the sitting unfold as it would. Each thought became a part of the landscape, each breath an audible note in a dissonant harmony from the wind whipping through the rocks. It wasn’t a recognizable harmonious sound, but neither was my breath. Sitting was easy here in the wild. Time came and went and the quietness sank in for some time until eventually the pain in my legs slowly brought an end to my sitting.

In this wild place, even the exit of sitting, even the small, dull pain became part of the sensory scenery. It was easy to be in harmony with the wild when I was immediately, and recognizably amongst it. Even the backdrops of basic fear was part of that harmony. As the sun was going behind the hills I saw my own reason fade as some base fear became more real–one that I held onto tightly and one that only could exist if I held onto it. The wild lets fear come and go. A primate, I could grab a rock in my hand to have a weapon for violence if needed. A sudden rustle or a darting motion on my periphery causes a startled thought to flash–excitement finds its way in, even when space and silence is all there is.

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