I've been injured for some time now and I thought that my recovery was nearly complete. Then, on Father's Day, I was playing basketball and my hip nearly gave way again. So I'm still recovering. I think of the things that I can do in the meantime: writing, rehabilitating...and I find that my karate is actually not that bad. It can be fluid or rigid, strength or leverage, swift or slow. I'm starting to finally make some small progress in making it more mindless, more mushin.
I've been working on different meditation schemes with varying success but I did want to mention one breakthrough. I was on the bus, working with opening my senses and breathing, closing and opening my focus. I'd start at the immediate - the sensation of my body, pulses, itches, the feeling of clothes against skin. Then I'd move outward: scent of perfume, sound of the wind outside, the traffic, a woman talking on a cell, the pages of a book being shifted, the driver ripping a transfer, the coins being dropped in the farebox. Then I opened my eyes and tried to clear my mind enough to take in as much as I could without dwelling on any one detail - fidgeting in a chair, itching an ear, a look, an expression, the sunlight, someone checking the time, the guy next to me making the sign of the cross on his chest after looking at a girl's rear as she stood.
And then...I woke up. I roused myself from...I'm not sure really. Was I sleeping? I could have sworn I was lucid...and when my eyes opened the bus was basically exactly where I remembered it being. Time hadn't past, yet I'd lost a sense of time.
I was in that place between sleep and awake. I hadn't just dozed off, because my mind was still aware of the things that I'd been observing in an unbroken flow. But the feeling of just having been dreaming was unmistakable. My lucid observations had dipped me into a dream state.
Now: can I do it again?