Several years ago I gave a speech titled “Open All Doors, Take from All Sources,” in which I encouraged my audience to embrace Life in all its fullness. The speech didn’t go over, either because they might have thought I was talking about opening all doors and robbing people blind, or because the audience had heard enough of that kind of bunk for all of their accumulated lifetimes, or because I didn’t believe in it myself.
The gist of my talk was that your Life is like walking down a long dormitory hallway with doors on both sides. You may choose to not even look into any of the doorways, walking on toward the last door at the End. Or fear might drive you to enter the nearest doorway and whatever you find in that room determines the whole sequence of the rest of your Life. Husband, Daddy, Worker, Retiree, Dead Guy.
Another might find the doorway that represents medicine and he/she enters a life-long fulfilling career. Doctor, Doctor, Doctor, Dead Guy/Dead Gal. Others may flit impulsively from door to door. Dilettante, Dilettante, Dilettante, Dilettante, Dilettante, Corpse.
After a recent morning meditation, I realized that the metaphor of a dorm hallway with numerous doors was hardly representative of Life. For some of us Life is more like a swamp with no doors at all and for others it is like an endless stainless steel room with a High Definition TV, a Lazy Boy, and chips. For me it is sometimes like a swamp but more often it’s an adventure of continuous wonder and joy. Really.
The wonder and joy come from the meditation, which I do most mornings for about an hour. If you’ve got the whole inner landscape to explore you don’t need to open doors on the physical plane.
A more accurate analogy for the door model would be that any one doorway would lead into a room which would contain Experiences, Things, Friends, Family, Lover(s) and, other doors. Passing through one of the those doorways might lead to other sorts of rooms, more contents and, of course, more doors.
This model is somewhat closer to Life in that we don’t know where we are going most of the time and when we get there we don’t know where to go from there. Like a tree of computer folders and files it has a logic but in the case of Life the logic is apparent only in hindsight.
But what if you had a floor plan? You’d have an overview, able to see the whole thing, all at once, all the doors, all the rooms, the ideas, the feelings, Everything, and you’d be able to see that all the rooms, passageways, and doors eventually lead to the end of the body on this physical plane.
Why meditate? Because meditation is the floor plan.
There are numerous books on meditation and nearly as many teachers. For a guideline to meditation, Eno recommends looking at Swami Rama’s, Meditation and its Practice. If this works for you stick with it, if not, seek and the right source, whether book or teacher, will find you.