Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Taming the monkey brain …

Is the sound of silence the end of the self? – Tim Parks – Aeon.

More radical, and mortifying perhaps, are solutions involving ritual prayer, rosaries, or mantras. Such an approach feels like a full-scale assault on the self, with an acoustic weapon. Despite, or perhaps because of, my religious childhood, I have never tried this. I’ve never desired a mantra. I suspect, as with music, once the mantra is over, the chattering self would bounce back more loquacious and self-righteous than ever.

I do pray the rosary — in Latin, which turns the words into something like a chant.  The inner chatter continues for a bit, but tends to become more muted after a while. And then, from time to time, there are moments when I — whoever that may be — am simply there, listening to the Latin, and otherwise pretty much thought-free.

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