January 13, 2011

In the Center of the Earth

This holiday season, I dug through some of my old books to find something worth reading to my little cousins. I stumbled across one of my favorites: How to Dig a Hole to the Other Side of the World. In it, a boy starts to dig and eventually ends up in the center of the earth.


It had a nifty paradox that fascinated my cousins and myself alike:

The center of the earth
is a place where
east meets west,
north meets south,
and up meets down.
At the center of the earth
there is nothing under you.
Every direction is up.
Your feet are pointing up
and your head is pointing up,
both at the same time.
Because there is nothing under you,
you will weigh nothing.
You will float inside your no-spaceship.

And I couldn't help but reflect that the closest I've ever come to understanding such a paradox is in meditation: when we reach the center of ourselves, all concepts and directions and distinctions fade away. It is in such authenticity, when we are faced with ourselves as we truly are, that clarity of purpose and personal vision really emerge.

That's why I recommend at least 15 minutes of silence every day, centering and connecting with ourselves as we really are.