Day 11: Meditational Walking

Okay. I love taking walks. And I love walking labyrinths. But I don’t really consider either meditation. Well, let’s amend that. I don’t consider activity meditation until you get to that point where you get the athlete’s white space: where nothing is important except taking that next step. Unfortunately for me, I don’t get that with a walk. Speedwalking, maybe. Jogging, definitely. Walking? Nah.

I will grant that developing a meditative mindset during activities would be beneficial. Ritual work usually involves a good deal of motion, and it just doesn’t do to have too mundane a focus during ritual, after all. So I’m willing to give this a shot.

Roderick says that “the focal point of walking meditation can be one of several options that depend on the purpose of the meditation.” these are things such as the sensations of your body liek weigh shifts, counting breaths steps, etc. He also goes on to say that there are two specific types of walking meditations: sunwalking and moonwalking. Sunwalking is brisk and gentle, with a quick and long stride. Moonwalking is where each step is half the length of the foot, with a pause between steps that lasts about three breaths. Roderick says that this “allows you to integrate the energy of each step you take.”

I think it must look so stupid. I’d be scared to do this where someone might see me. They’d take me for a nut, that’s for sure.

We don’t have to start either today, thank goodness. Just determine which one would better suit our personality.

Exercise: Moon or Sun?

Determining whether you are naturally a Sun or Moon walker is a simple process. Below is a list of some solar and lunar qualities. Circle the qualities that best describe you.

Solar Lunar
Fiery: Expressive Mellow: Contemplative
Fast paced: Active Serene: Sluggish
Impatient: Moving Forgiving: Tranquil
Overt: Frenetic Discrete: Secretive
Sexual: Passionate Sensual: Emotional
Cerebral: Analytical Empathetic: Compassionate
Logical: Reasonable Intuitive: Introverted

Whichever category holds the most markings represents your natural type, either solar or lunar. If your markings are evenly distributed, you have integrated energy and can use either method with success.

Interestingly enough, my choices this time are different from what they were last year. It doesn’t really surprise me. I think I could go either way on most of these, really. For instance, I’ve trained myself to be mellow and contemplative, but my first impulse when provoked is to flame up, gesticulate wildly, and be a ball of energy for a good bit. The things I chose last time pretty much put me into the Sunwalking category, though I had the sense to realize I could do both well. This one shows the split a little better. Either way, if it comes down to it, I’ll choose Sunwalking. I just can’t see me seriously doing the Moonwalking for very long. Were we at DePauw and had the labyrinth handy, sure. I’d try it. Or at Boone Hutch. But those are the only two places I’d really consider it.

Incidentally, Roderick is the only person I’ve ever heard delineate this into the Moon and Sunwalking names. It would be worthwhile to try to track down the originator of these meditational paths.

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