by Michael Maciel
Meditation is, on one end, sitting quietly without moving, and, on the other end, being in a state of oneness with God. Your experience of it will lie somewhere on that spectrum. One thing is for sure, however – the longer you do the former, the better chances you will have at doing the latter.
The formula for stillness is simple. Like a pond at midnight, you are so motionless that even the bugs racing across your surface barely cause a ripple. Your mind becomes a single retina, registering – everything. But it’s a different kind of everything, not the kind that a camera sees (or a mirror), but the kind that deep-space telescopes pick up, or super-sensitive seismographs. Because the stillness of meditation is so deep that the normal sights and sounds of this world are just another form of static – like thoughts, their forms are endless.
The stillness of meditation sinks below the world of sights and sounds. Below the world of thoughts. To a place that precedes them. To the moment before motion begins. Between the heartbeats. Between the thoughts. The Interim of all “things.” It precedes even the will to speak. It is the via negativa of being, the neti, neti (not this, not that) of awareness. It is the borderland of existence, the brink of the abyss. It is what your face looked like before you were born.
The mind cannot go there. It is deeper than the mind. How, then, can one see if one has no eyes? How can one hear if one has no ears? How can one ask a question that has no answer? This is the the stillness of meditation, the gateway to the ineffable.