Posted by: Michael Rickicki | 10/04/2016

Fear and Body Contemplation

After my experience the other day with body contemplation I thought it would be a good idea to use another of Ajahn Achalo’s guided meditations that combined anapanasati, metta and kayanupassana. The breath work grounded me well and then the metta bhavana worked to soften everything. 

I suppose that’s why I was able to detect the underlying tension and resistance as we began to contemplate the earth. element. Contemplating the dryness of the hair didn’t produce much aversion but once we moved into the body proper I felt a tightening in my abdomen. Now, I don’t know if this was due in part to my fear that we would be contemplating the blood (this was the first time I used this meditative) or if it was a combination of that and a deep fear of setting the impermanent nature of the body. Just reflecting on the bones and their susceptibility to diseases was enough to make the reflection uncomfortable. And yet, I’m grateful that there is enough sensitivity to even notice these things. Clearly, if I’m having such strong reactions this is a place to continue the work. 

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Shillelagh Studies

A hub for the music, culture, knowledge, and practice of Irish stick-fighting, past and present.