I feel like I’m in a race, which is usually not a good sign. Racing means going as fast as possible towards something, but I’m not sure what. I don’t believe in too much forward-ism, in too much focus on the goal. I beleive in doing the best I can in this very moment. In this moment it means getting a lot of things done – why the feeling of racing.
I love going by train in between Stockholm and Gothenburg. It’s three hours of sitting completely still. It’s three hours of possibility to work undisturbed. And I work well on trains. It’s as if the speed of the train is transferring some of it’s speed into my fingers rattling against the keyboard. Every now and then I look up and out. Landscapes are flashing by and my eyes find rest and new energy from fields and forests. I long for nature and make sure I’ll go for a run as soon as I’ve dropped my bags inside the door.
I’m going to take some time off. Now, I don’t do proper vacations. I don’t even remember the last time I laid on a beach. I don’t remember one single trip without hauling around climbing gear, a monofin, a kayak or a mountain bike. But once a year I try to make time to go on a real vacation. A vacation from everything. It’s called “vipassana”. By sanskrit it means “to see what really is” or “to see things as they are”.
It’s a “vacation” from civilization; from speaking, from reading, from writing, from listening to music and from watching anything like television. For 10 days I will remain silent in a retreat setting. Me and maybe 80 more people will sit still and work with what’s going on in our minds, searching for a one pointed concentration and see reality without the layers of preconception. I will wake up by 4 a.m every day and spend the day with yoga, meditation, working and listening to lectures of eastern philisophy wisdom. I’ve done this three times before and every time it’s has been the best thing I’ve done. It’s about living in the present moment with mindfulness, seeing everything clearly. It’s not about not racing anywhere, but staying right here, right now, in peace.
The monks in the retreat says racing through life means that you are racing towards death without living.