I decided during the middle of the day to do a walking meditation, down 5th Avenue. I focused on each step. It was difficult at times because New York, as some of you know, is full of mostly assaulting stimulants: images, sounds, aromas (not to be confused with rosé aromas), etc.
It was a cool sunny day, and every time something tripped me up (no pun intended), I came back to the breath and focused on my body/movement. The experience, however, was challenging in ways I both expected and didn't.
Expected: to be distracted a lot, but the thing that distracted me the most was my mind. My thoughts moved in and out of a certain unhappiness I’ve been having with my life and I couldn’t just shut it off so I let it be, despite my desire.
Not Expected: deep pockets of silence. So quite it scared me. I would “wake up” to make sure the noise, people were still there. Like if it wasn’t there, that meant I wasn’t o.k. Am I so conditioned?
So, would I do it again? Probably not…that is, not down 5th Avenue.
And yes, as one would expect in New York, no one took a second look. But actually, there were times where I felt people parted the way for me.