It’s fall! Time to gather. Or maybe not.
Can you recall a time when you were present? When you were focused on the task at hand? In other words, when you were your pure authentic self? Some describe this state of mind as pure consciousness. In the 2004 film I Heart Huckabees two characters are searching for existential answers and practice a technique called “pure being”. The method involves one character smacking the other with a rubber ball in the face. The goal is to feel and be present without adding any human drama crap to it. It is a very funny comedy, but also has a ton of truth in it. Can we really be? Just be? Can we experience something without labeling it?
Similarly, in both his books Touched by Fire and the upcoming The Secret of the Yoga Sutra, Pandit Rajmani Tigunait recounts a story from his childhood in which he was being harassed and abused by distant family members. The assaulters continually threw him into a pit filled with compost while onlookers watched and didn’t attempt to aid him. The experience made him rageful as he kept getting thrown back into the pit after he’d climb out several times until at one point he felt the presence of the Divine Mother around him and he felt nothing but love, comfort, and compassion. This experience of being in the zone, pure being, being present, etc., allowed the bullies to leave and the incident ended.
We can think of this as an action or a state of mind, or maybe it doesn’t take any work at all. Maybe it takes shedding of attachments, context, social conditioning, dual thinking, and other things in our way. So practice it. Try to feel and be without attaching a definition or judgement to it. Instead of harvesting, gathering, building up, try shedding, like brown crusty leaves off of a tree.