Saturday, March 8, 2008

Standing Still

Being still is incredibly hard. To sit in meditation or to stay with grace in a challenging yoga pose can cause ours minds to rebel. Confusion and protest can easily arise. Yet when we soften and accept, stillness can provide peace.

Stillness is not motionlessness. Like the clear and centered movement of a spinning top, or standing with your eyes closed, it is simply slowing down to notice subtleties. It is pointed awareness.

The event documented below is amazing. This troupe made thousands of rushed and hurried people in Grand Central Station just stop for a minute. Perhaps it was just in confusion that they pondered why and how all these people were standing still. That is enough, I believe, to experience the struggle for inner stillness.

And, boy, would it have made Allan Kaprow proud.

"The stillness in stillness is not the real stillness; only when there is stillness in movement does the universal rhythm manifest." Bruce Lee

"Within you there is a stillness and a sanctuary to which you can retreat at any time and be yourself." Hermann Hesse

"In the midst of movement and chaos, keep stillness inside of you." Deepak Chopra

"No thought, no action, no movement, total stillness: only thus can one manifest the true nature and law of things from within and unconsciously, and at last become one with heaven and earth." Lao Tzu

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