When we start with empathy, understanding, and curiosity, we come to see each of us as we are — wild animals wired for distraction. It’s worth sitting with for a moment: distractions, urges, cravings, and aversions are how we have survived. And while those instincts have helped to keep us alive, they haven’t done much to make us happy.
When we try to meditate, we soon discover that we are not in control of our minds. We attempt to steady our focus, and instead find a world a restless conflict. Never satisfied, attention is constantly scanning, hunting for the next treat, the next salve, the next interesting morsel. With time, our thoughts reveal just how fragmented we are, with subconscious warring factions pulling us in a million different directions. Feelings of frustration, impatience, and loneliness can make it difficult to sit in peace.
So what’s a wild animal to do? Are lucidity, peace and freedom even possible?