The occasion to escape the Michigan winter is an opportunity for which I am truly grateful and I have the good fortune of being in St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Today is the fifth day of a week long vacation and I had been meditating in spite of the disruption in my daily routine. Mid afternoon today, I realized I had not meditated this morning. I realized this lapse in routine while listening to the steady rhythm of my breath amplified under water. At that moment I decided to turn my snorkeling adventure into a meditation.
Amazing how a submerged mind is similar to dry one.
I began to notice my emotional reactions to the underwater world. When a colorful parrot fish or two swam past, I wanted an entire school. When I found myself in an area devoid of coral, with only sand or sea grass, I was disappointed. But as I became more aware of the steadiness of my breath and the roller coaster of attachment and aversion, I also became delighted with the pure white sand on the bottom of the cove. Instead of being bored with the absence of coral, turtles, and fish, I began to notice the infinite textures of the dance of light and shadow on sand. I returned to the intensified echoed sound of my breath repeatedly, as I floated face down along the surface peering through my snorkel mask.
I look forward to the remaining opportunities to practice underwater meditation before returning to Michigan. It’s absolutely true that mind does what the mind does, whether on land or at sea.
Coral Bay, St. John USVI