On Monday evening we had a CPD group meeting. This is a group connected with The Analytic Network and we meet every 3-4 weeks to look at a subject relevant to psychotherapy as part of ‘continuous professional development’. As it was near the end of term it was difficult to feel enthusiastic about the subjects that were offered and eventually it was agreed that we might listen to part of a CD by Eckhart Tolle. Then there was about 45 minutes of a gradual calming and a sense of stillness as we listened to Tolle talking about our crazy world and our distracted minds.
This morning at a yoga sutra workshop the leader Leila spoke about the mind which is like a drunken monkey bitten by a scorpion. In other words we are not centred or present or in any way still. She also said that a great deal of what goes on in our mind is the same as what went on in there yesterday and the day before and week and year before that . It’s the hamster wheel existence. So part of the answer is meditation and becoming aware of being in the present moment.
The interesting thing last Monday was that after what felt like a good experience of gradually calming down and listening we all spoke about the insanity of the world: the sabotaging of the environment, the killing and endless suffering from the violence that goes on and on, the cruelty to animals and those of us in the west suffering from consumption disorder. The clarity that came was the seeing how sick the world is. This is CPD in the sense that sometimes it’s hard to stop and realize this. And the answer Thomas Merton and Eckhart Tolle would both say is about waking up to what is happening and being alert and aware of how and who we are in this same world and how to live with the awareness of a different sort of reality.