Karl's Keyboard #1
Welcome to “May I Dwell in Gratitude” Some of you may have been peeking over my shoulder as I struggled to get my ducks in a row. (Darned unruly, these ducks!) I first started writing posts for this blog back in July 2018 and hired a consultant who designed and put the blog up about a year later. But I wasn’t as ready as I hoped. I kept losing things—including my way. I kept writing epistles, but I didn’t grasp the details of putting them online. Now I’ve engaged another consultant who’s helping me gear up. My intentions about adding new posts. This is the first issue of my newsletter, which will come out every two weeks or so as we add new posts. I will provide a non-linear memoir of my 40-plus years as a meditator. I have tackled dozens of forms of meditating. I couldn’t write about all of them, so I will give you mixture of highlights and lowlights. So this blog is full of stories. Sometimes I may seem to wander off on digressions, most notably addressing dreams and the challenges of growing old with a semblance of grace. And I will speculate about diagnoses. But meditation is the main course. I started writing these epistles soon after I committed to put loving-kindness at the center of my meditations. Many of my meditations have come from the East. The Tibetan Buddhists have my attention. I like their meditations. I don’t consider myself a Buddhist, but a Taoist. I like their meditations, too, but they are so challenging! This week’s featured epistles:
Discovering My Place in the Cosmos. I had never “sat” before being initiated into Transcendental Meditation. What an experience! To think one could go to such a space by choice, when I had previous found it only by some stumbling happenstance!
Recovering My Lost Past. I had been meditating for about 20 years when I first heard of the labyrinth—this installation patterned after the mini-pilgrimages installed in some European cathedrals. As the labyrinth found its was across America, it spurred a revolution in our spiritual lives.
Invocation: Opening with May I. A lot of people upon first encountering loving-kindness are taken aback by the typical opening of “May I.” It suits me just fine, and I hope people will give it a try.
A Topical Pandemic. As a rule I will steer clear of topical subjects, but the coronavirus demands the attention of everyone who meditates.
As the coronavirus settled itself over my community, squatting on its haunches at the entryway to every shopping mall and mom-and-pop enterprise, on church steps classrooms and gymnasiums-even drawing up a chair at the dining table-I began to think of addressing it in an epistle.
May I always remember that mild summer morning so long ago when I was initiated into Transcendental Meditation. My wife Faith and I went together, and were greeted by a slender young woman of serene beauty. She was at a small airy house in the middle of a field in Redmond.
When my practice of loving-kindness meditation was in its early stages, I was eager to share it. So naturally enough I brought the technique to the meditation group my wife and I facilitate at the senior residential cooperative where we live. It was a rough go. I started by explaining how the technique works.
After I had invested thousands of hours and hundreds of dollars in this blog, I went into a walk-about. I had hired an expert to design the blog, and she raised the ante by turning it into a work of illustrated prose.
A Big Huzzah I have recently added to my practice. If I’m blogging about meditation I ought to read blogs in the same field. I’ll cite noteworthy examples in every newsletter and will write the occasional post on these ramblings.Today’s Big Huzzah goes to Paul Harrison, actor, writer, teacher and proprietor of thedailymeditator.com. Every day I find compelling posts on this blog. Is he a one-man conglomerate, or a Santa of meditation with a workshop full of elves? Today, I refer you to his post on meditations for anxiety, sent anew on March 30. https://www.thedailymeditation.com/anxiety-2 Please help create a dialogue! I’m looking forward to a dialogue with readers of this blog. Please leave your comments!. On occasion, I will edit comments, mostly for length. If you want to send me a private message, please email me at email@example.com. I will reply. Til next time …May your meditations be sweet, deep and enlightening. this text with your newsletter message here.