Monday, September 01, 2008

now, dance

Where the Hell is Matt? (2008) from Matthew Harding on Vimeo.

My uncle Pete sent me this video. So beautiful. Fits perfectly with where I'm at.

I've had a very trying few weeks. But ultimately I think they've been valuable.

A couple of Thursdays ago, nine members of the City Council co-sponsored an ordinance that would essentially ban the mayor's wife from working at City Hall. It's a clear effort to take him out by attacking him at a spot where he's most vulnerable.

For the following week, I was consumed with stress and anxiety. I could barely think straight, wasn't sleeping well at night, fell behind on my exercise and I wasn't eating well. There were moments when I thought I might well have an anxiety attack. Finally, I decided enough was enough and I told them I needed to take a week off, which I did last week.

It wasn't easy, you can well imagine, for a person like me who is so needy of others' approval. I felt guilty for leaving them stranded during a storm.

One of my main objectives for the week, though, was to read two books by Eckhart Tolle, who is sort of an unlikely pop spirituality star. Actually, I listened to them on my iPod while I did errands and chores and such. His main message is that life can only be found in the present moment, that the past and future are illusions where we live most of our lives, building stress and unhappiness. And he offers some practical suggestions about how to stay in the moment, and let go of all the drama of regret and anxiety and fear and whatnot.

It hasn't been easy. But I'm working pretty hard on it, trying to find ways to appreciate the present, to be present in it. He talks about how there are ideally three modes of being: acceptance, enjoyment and enthusiasm. The first is for when we're in situations that are unpleasant, the second is for pleasant moments and the third is the pleasant moments aimed toward a goal or a sense of purpose.

So the video from Pete is great. It's like a visual statement of what Tolle is talking about. What better example of enjoying the moment than dancing?

1 comment:

Applecart T. said...

i wonder if being in the present moment means one can't read / listen and do chores at the same time.

i want to know what one does when one is in another state of being besides the three ideal ones!