During our last discussion and meditation session before the holidays, we started discussing the principle of balance. Life out of balance makes it hard to attain the quiet and calm mind needed for meditation and has many other detrimental effects on our lives as well, from potentially ruining our health and finances to wrecking our relationships with others.
We talked about many dimensions of balance in life such as work/play, self/others, expending/storing, activeness/passiveness, acceptingness/exactingness, materialism/spiritualism. Someone asked if it was possible to achieve a permanent state of balance, but the answer seemed to be that external and internal factors are always trying to move us out of balance so that maintaining balance is a constant and difficult effort. The difficulty of this effort is probably one of the major reasons why persons seeking tranquility of mind and balance in life abandoned lay society in ancient times and retreated to the mountains and monasteries.
Another difficulty of maintaining balance, we thought, is that many of the dimensions of balance involve our interactions with others. Managing our interactions with others so that they do not put us out of balance can require us to disappoint others’ desires to draw on our resources of time, money or energy, which, when it comes to our bosses in a slow growth, low-job-mobility economy, is very difficult to do.
Tonight we will continue our discussion of functional meditation and the balance principle during our Wednesday 7:30-8:30 PM class. Come join us. It’s $18 to drop in and $60 to enroll for all four sessions in January.