Basic Instructions– for slowing down
By: Eknath Easwaran
In today’s speeded-up ways of working and living, slowing down is an important spiritual discipline. In the modern world we are conditioned to live faster and faster with no time for inner reflection or sensitivity to others. We are only beginning to see that speed makes our lives tense, insecure, inefficient, and superficial.
It is not enough to talk about this; we must learn to slow down the pace of our lives. To do this it is a great help to start the day early; that is how you set the pace for the day. Have your meditation as early as possible. Don’t rush through breakfast. Allow enough time to get to work without haste. At any time during the day when you catch yourself hurrying, repeat the mantram to slow down.
In order to slow down, it is necessary to gradually eliminate activities outside your job and family responsibilities which do not add to your spiritual growth. At first you may feel at a loss for what to do with your new found extra time. What we lose in activity we gain in intensity by learning to rest content on each moment. The English poet John Donne says, “Be your own home and therein dwell.” We can find our center of gravity within ourselves by simplifying and slowing down our lives.
It is essential not to confuse slowness with sloth, which breeds procrastination and general inefficiency. In slowing down, attend meticulously to details, giving the very best you are capable of even to the smallest undertaking.
Day 32: Enjoying this rainy and cloudy Sunday afternoon with some good blogs, great books, and some welcomed quiet time. *Sometimes we all just need a slower day.