Here is why I meditate… Poem by Teacher, Author & Stand-up Dharma Comic Wes Nisker
A reflection on practice by Other Teachers & Folks We Value
I meditate because when I was younger it was all the rage.
I meditate because Siddhartha Gautama, Bodhidharma, Marco Polo, the British Raj, Carl Jung, Alan Watts, Jack Kerouac, Alfred E. Neuman, et al.
I meditate because evolution gave me a big brain, but it didn’t come with an instruction manual.
I meditate because I have all the information I need.
I meditate because the largest colonies of living beings, the coral reefs, are dying.
I meditate because I want to touch deep time, where the history of humanity can be seen as just an evolutionary adjustment period.
I meditate because life is too short and sitting slows it down.
I meditate because life is too long and I need an occasional break.
I meditate because I want to experience the world as Rumi did, or Walt Whitman, or Mary Oliver.
I meditate because now I know that enlightenment doesn’t exist, so I can relax.
I meditate because of the Dalai Lama’s laugh.
I meditate because there are too many advertisements in my head, and I’m erasing all but the very best of them.
I meditate because the physicists say there may be eleven dimensions to reality, and I want to get a peek into a few more of them.
I meditate because I’ve discovered that my mind is a great toy and I like to play with it.
I meditate because I want to remember that I’m perfectly human.
Sometimes I meditate because my heart is breaking.
Sometimes I meditate so that my heart will break.
I meditate because a Vedanta master once told me that in Hindi my name, Nis-ker, means “non-doer.”
I meditate because I’m growing old and want to become more comfortable with emptiness.
I meditate because I think Robert Thurman was right to call it an “evolutionary sport,” and I want to be on the home team.
I meditate because I’m composed of 100 trillion cells, and from time to time I need to reassure them that we’re all in this together.
I meditate because it’s such a relief to spend time ignoring myself.
I meditate because my country spends more money on weapons than all other nations in the world combined. If I had more courage, I’d probably immolate myself.
I meditate because I want to discover the fifth Brahma-vihara, the Divine Abode of Awe, and then go down in history as a great spiritual adept.
I meditate because I’m building myself a bigger and better perspective, and occasionally I need to add a new window.
From the Fall 2006 issue of Inquiring Mind (Vol. 23, No. 1)
Wes “Scoop” Nisker is an award-winning broadcast journalist & commentator, Buddhist meditation teacher, bestselling author & standup Dharma comic. Wes has studied Buddhist meditation for over five decades with teachers in Asia & America, and for the past 35 years has been leading his own retreats & workshops. He was the founder & co-editor of the Buddhist journal “Inquiring Mind” & is the author of multiple bestselling books.
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