Being or Doing

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by Miranda Chapman

Lately, I have been reminded of a phrase I once heard or read: we are human beings, not human doings.

Two weeks ago I completed my stepping away from the administrative and program direction work with Copper Beech Institute to make more space for my teaching practice. I had been anticipating this reprieve, taking July and August "off" and resuming my teaching work at Copper Beech, and beyond, in September.

But, it's interesting how I choose to fill this time. There are so many moments when I cannot allow myself to simply be but I must do: the laundry, the banking, meditate, something productive. The doing feels safer in some ways: I am protected from judgment of my perceived laziness by others and myself. Sitting and doing nothing, luxuriating in the unknown of the next moments: something about it doesn't feel acceptable.

I often joke about my inner 'overlord' — this insistent voice in my head telling me what to do, how to do it, if I've done it good enough -- which I then superimpose into my outer life and run myself ragged with all of the 'shoulds.'

It doesn't hurt that my partner and I have taken on the challenge of building a house from the ground up so there are innumerable tasks at hand. But, this morning, I give myself permission to be. I give myself permission to sleep in late and drink coffee on rising. I give myself permission to meditate and move mindfully for as long as I want. I give myself permission to stop all of the doing and rest back into the being.


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Awaken Everyday Blog
Writing to inspire mindfulness, contemplation and wholesome living, by Copper Beech master teachers, students and contributors.

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