Meditation. He was sitting in a darkened room, cross legged, a firm cushion raising him slightly from the floor. His back was straight, he sat perfectly balanced with no perceptible tension in his body at all. As he gently breathed in, through slightly parted lips, tongue gently tucked behind his front teeth, his mind spoke the word: Shamatha, an old Sanskrit word meaning “Dwelling in tranquillity.” And as he breathed out, his mind spoke the Sanskrit word: Shunyata, meaning “Emptiness, void.”
He found that using these old words for a short time, at the start of his meditation, helped to rid his mind of all the chatter and the sounds of the world around him. He could remember a time when it was so, so quiet, and how they told him, he’d hear God’s plan. Beliefs in God, as was prescribed to him then, as a child, had long since faded though. There was a new God in his life now; one of his own making.
To the observer, seeing the Locksmith, sitting as he was now, in a darkened room, incense burning, he would potentially have been instantly labelled as Buddhist, yet looks can be deceiving. He didn’t hold to many of the Buddhist’s beliefs, just those he found useful. And he knew about labels, he knew about the label an observer would place on him, and how that flew directly in the face, of so much of what the Buddhists believed. Hypocrisy and nonsense so much of it. No, he was happy to have an identity all of his own, not Buddhist, yet not quite fully anything you could easily label. Human of course, just as human as the Buddhists, who’d even like to lose that particular tag; a tag all humans carry, right up until they die. No escaping that.
As the chatter of his mind stilled so did the need for the repetition of his Sanskrit words. Only aware of his breathing now: the sound and feel of it, a slow steady inhalation followed by that inevitable, yet no longer fully automatic, exhalation. Becoming more and more relaxed with every out breath, drifting down and down into that comfortable place of calm. It was then that the Locksmith heard and felt the name; the name of his next inquisitor: Emily. His mind felt the sound. He would patiently wait.
To be continued…