Inner  Frontier
Fourth Way Spiritual Practice

 

Inner Work


For the week of July 17, 2006


Transition to Stillness

During quiet meditation or in particularly favorable situations we may taste stillness, the vast, empty, and peaceful spaciousness of pure consciousness. We also can practice intentionally making the transition to stillness during our ordinary activities. To do so, we need familiarity with stillness, born of that stage of meditation where we enter the space behind and beyond thoughts and sensory perceptions. By entering that true consciousness again and again, we come to recognize it and learn how to open to it in meditation. We see that thinking does not help. Instead it involves an act of perceptual broadening, of entering an already existing region of ourselves that forms part of the great silent ocean of awareness.

Our task now consists in discovering how to transition into stillness during more of our life: to begin living in the great world that envelops our ordinary world. You may well find that starting with a foundation in awareness of physical sensation, whole body sensing, makes the transition to stillness more possible during your ordinary activities. Established, even if briefly, in sensation, we widen our inner horizon past the shores of our ordinary sense experience. We shift our attention from the emotional, thought, and sensory content of awareness to the context, to our awareness itself, to that ever-present stillness underlying all that moves in time, both inwardly and outwardly.

Thoughts, sights, sounds, and actions may continue, but we stand in the stillness that accompanies us wherever we go. We participate in life from the context of the peace of consciousness, from the settledness within.

For this week, study how to make the transition to stillness, both in sitting meditation and in the run of life.


     

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