Adventures : Zeph Tales (20)

The Case of the Acccidental Cloud Meditation

Other than the truth that you can realise this truth
the clouds have the same nature* as you.

– Stonepeace

*Same nature of being impermanent and non-self

With ample time to kill after finishing his tedious homework, Zeph heaved a deep sigh of relief, as he channel-surfed the goggle box. Nothing particularly interesting, he thought, as he flicked it off. Nothing of particular interest to surf online either –  enough facing of the computer anyway! Opening the fridge for a snack, he realised that not only was he not truly hungry, there was nothing to munch anyway.

Fortunately, he wasn’t too tired to be unable to consciously enjoy this long-awaited break. He had, afterall, worked hard to deserve it. Some personal time finally – to do whatever he wishes, yet there was nothing in particular he wished to do at the moment. Suddenly, he realised this was one of those rare breaks from routine. Usually, he would find something to enjoy without second thought, to take his mind off work. That was routine.

Zeph realised this is a “real” break; to simply do something “randomly habitual” would merely be keeping busy, occupying oneself with someting. There was an almost “unbearable lightness of being”, a feeling of suspension, as he gazed calmly and gladly out of the living room window, at the glorious unimpeded high-rise scenery. Wonderful weather, he thought, but nowhere I want or need to go. He laid down lazily on the sofa, gazing upwards up at the fluffy white clouds, contemplating this bizarre feeling of existential aloneness. “So many possibilities in the world”, he mused, “and I can do whatever I wish. Let me choose to fully relish this moment of possibility in itself…”

He stared at the clouds, letting his mind wander aimlessly, letting it run free, to do whatever it pleases. With his half-opened eyes relaxed but fixed firmly on the clouds, he soon forgot he was on Earth, that he was “he”. The soothing zephyr blowing onto him was also puffing the clouds in his direction. His gaze had set him entirely “within” these clouds, giving the illusion that he was disembodied and dissolved, floating and soaring into them.

Still focused on the clouds, he became mindful that the clouds occupied his mind more and more, as other stray thoughts trickled by less and less. His thoughts are soon of the clouds themselves, so much so that he “became” the clouds. Pleasantly surprised yet bewildered, he realised his mind has always been cloud-like – his thoughts in constant flux, always shape-shifting. Just as a cloud is never a fixed shape, his changing mind was “change” itself.

Amazed by this “alien” yet blissful experience, Zeph snapped out of it, realising he had accidentally stumbled into some form of meditation. It struck him that it was the fickleness of his monkey mind that made him constantly swinging from tree to tree, reaching for one sense pleasure after another. The experience was a break from this routine. He realised that to mindlessly kill time was to waste life. He learnt that his mind can become vast and open, free from desires and wandering thoughts, that though it changes all the time, it can change for the better, to be less dependent on the material for happiness.

If this short break alone is so wondrous, would it not be much more wonderful to permanently free himself of his “self”, to be one with the universe, to be enlightened via proper training of his mind? This is a perfect day, he thought, because on this day, he had the best break ever. With this thought, Zeph sat up, refreshed and “reborn” from his very very short and somewhat accidental retreat. It struck him that he had come a long way from his existential crisis years ago (see, which was filled with fret of the moment, instead of making peace with it. (Note that the above are not actual meditation instructions.)

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