What does it mean to ebb and flow, to roll with the punches? My breathing ebbs and flows and I can watch that pretty easily. Some days are good, some days are bad, I can mostly flow with that.
But what about real shit, real darkness, can I flow with that?
I woke up ever hour last night from different scenes of the same dream. I was a new enlisted in some form of military training.
We were attached to teams and every few hours we were called into formation.
During each formation, one member of the team was called out by the leadership and shot.
In other words, I woke up every hour to a teammate getting shot and fell back asleep into a dream were I was going to be killed.
The dream seemed to keep pace with me. As the night wore on my behavior inside the dream deteriorated.
I dreaded going to formation. In the dream, I'd fall out and go to my hootch or the chow hall. I'd show up late. Then someone else would get shot and I'd wake up.
About the third time I awoke I started to not only get frustrated with the dream I seemed to be stuck in but also the fact that I kept waking up.
Present in the dream and the brief moments of being awake between was a sense of failure.
In between formations in my dream, my job had something to do with sharing the tool of mindfulness. Thinking back to the dream I remember moments trying to hand out flyers and put up posters in a movie theatre.
Everything was just so frustrating!
The last thing I remember about the dream was my face after being shot; I was smiling.
My present moment consists of memories of that dream and the fact that I slept poorly.
Can I ebb and flow with that?
This post was guided by the 64th stanza of the Art of Peace, a book written by Morihei Ueshiba
Armor Down has a website. Check it out.
If you like the AD Facebook page and I'll email you the PDF of a book called "Mindfulness in Plain English".
Need a nap? Try this 16min guided meditation I created.
Thrive as a civilian.