One breath at a time 1

Today I am, and for a long time I have been, in a deep and dark ravine. Most of the time I stare at my feet as I hurriedly move on, aimlessly. Thinking. With a bit of doing every now and then. Sometimes I look up and I see distant flashes of light. Maybe there is hope. No. That was nothing more than a flash of lightning generated by my thoughts. I am still locked inside. No way out, it seems.


As I walk I change direction. I walk long miles in the dark. I am not falling over as I have been walking in the dark for so long. I know how to do it. I wish I didn’t. But I walk, this is the only thing I know, this is the only thing I should do, the voices keep telling me. Voices who visit me and all bring presents: their all-knowing, all-right attitude. All telling me that I know nothing, I should do this or that, to live up to the norm, the standard to be like them. But all they are doing is making me cry and my tears turn the bottom of the ravine into mud then a marsh. I am sinking even deeper.

Sometime I think I sleep. Or am I only thinking differently while I am laying still. Uncontrolled, unregulated, untamed. I still seek, walk, run as I am lying in my bed. Yet I wake up ready to continue. I wish I did not continue. But I do, I walk, one step at a time. This seem to work, even if I do not know where my steps are taking me. I know what I should do, I know where I want to be, but I do not care about where I am. Only that I have got to get out of here. I am deep…

This is all me. I am where I wanted to be. I must be here, because my steps brought me here. A thought came to me about flying. Now I am desperately trying to grow wings. I know I can’t, but this fruitless struggle at least takes my mind away from the boring walk. But while I am walking a new thought occurred to me, so I change direction. Maybe one day I get to the wall of the ravine, I better walk carefully. I do not want to run into a wall. So just walk slowly and steadily. Not that I know where I am going.

Voices again, “Hey you, you should be doing this, that way and this way, we only want to help you. You only need to do this. Then you’ll be like us: successful, rich and envied”. I hear’em, yet they are not helping. I do not know how I should do this and that, I do not understand how can I become like them. I am a failure. Yet I keep walking.

I never seem to get tired. My steps never stop, yet I never seem to advance, to get closer to the edge of the ravine, the hole. I am deep and this depth seem to keep me here. I am generating my own self-defeating gravity. I am deep, in a hole, in the dark. A black hole. Finally I collapse under my own weight. I can’t move…

I cannot move, I cannot move a finger or even blink. All I hear is my breath. I’m frightened to death. As the air comes in and then it leaves me. It is still dark, I cannot move, I am afraid. The air comes in. I do not know what to do. The air goes out. This is insane, I should get up, I should try to get out of here! But I can’t. The air comes in. I am panicking, I am loosing my mind here. What is happening? The air goes out. I am thinking of a way out, but nothing seems to work. The air comes in. I would like to squeal, to yell, to call for help, but I can’t. The air goes out. I am better off dead.

I just realise I can’t even die. This scares me even more. Now what will happen with me in the dark, unable to move? The air comes in. I am vulnerable to anyone who comes here! Not that anyone ever comes here. The air goes out. I am vulnerable to the elements. What if an earthquake comes or a tidal wave? What will it do to me? The air goes out.

That is it. I give up. I cannot do anything, there is no one to help me. I just lay here, motionless while the air comes in. There is nothing working for me and I slowly give up, but the air goes out. The air comes in again. There is something happening. The air, my breath. At least I’ll make this tiny piece of air mine, for however long it chooses to stay. The air goes out. This is something. I do not even dare controlling it. It goes out and comes in again. That is all I can feel. This is something. It seems to stay with me, the feeling as the air comes in, then goes out.

I focus on it, there is nothing else I can do. So I observe it. Give it all my attention. There is nothing else to do…

It is loud as it comes in. But it is something. It’s getting faster. Wait! What is happening? Am I moving again? Am I walking again as the air goes out? No. Is it still dark as the air comes in? It doesn’t matter, I can’t control light. The air goes out. I can’t control a tidal wave. The air comes in. I cannot control the voices or the truth and lies in their words. The air goes out. I cannot even control my own thoughts, no matter what the sages and saints say. The air comes in. So I listen to it, concentrate on it and now only this exists.

My mind seem to wonder but air goes out and it’s coming in again. Is it always with me? My breath. The air goes out. I give up. It is too much. The air comes in. At least I am still alive. But wait! How do I know? The air goes out and it comes in again…