On my way to the fish store and supermarket I was thinking about my previous post, this idea about envisioning positive goals for yoga practice. Two things bothered me. One is, I have some qualms about thinking about the future. It’s that old stay in the moment, be present, thing. But I think this one just comes down to paradox. As I ruminated in “Living in the Now is over-rated” we can be in the moment and in our revery at the same time: “My problem with this is that if there’s no escaping the now, why worry about it? When I’m dreaming of the past (per John Lennon) I’m still in the now moment. When I’m worrying about tomorrow’s to-do list, I’m in the now.” So I don’t think it’s such a big deal to ask of oneself or others to imagine a certain future. Would you agree? I mean, one doesn’t want to live entirely goal-oriented, but as mortals we do need to imagine.
Then I thought about the lines about a goal might be feeling less stressed out. And I thought, better make that more positive. Less stress is too negative. And it was fun trying to figure out the opposite of that. “More serene” maybe? “Expanding the sense, or the experience, of tranquility.” Then I thought, “deepening your love of tranquility.”
Now I think that’s closer to it. And like love, it’s maybe not a constant, every minute kind of thing. I don’t know if I want, or I’m ready, for full tranquility. That still seems a little like death, unless it’s some superconscious state. I mean, when I went to see Rocket from the Tombs, I wasn’t seeking tranquility, I wanted to rock out. Very “rajasic” I know — I know. But this mortal world is made up of lots of rajas (along with the other two gunas) and I aim to enjoy it. So there is a time and place, right? Even for tranquility. But I do know this, that as I live further along my love and appreciation of tranquility increases. I’m not talking about the tranquility of the zombie, but a dynamic tranquility, a kind of active bliss.
So that’s a goal I’m going to contemplate, maybe even as I make my shrimp and pumpkin soup for tonight.