As people grow older and develop daily routines, the magic of life seems to dissipate. From a child's perspective, the World is a giant place, full of wonder and adventure. Through the eyes of a typical adult, it is a World of responsibilities and goals. The child's point of view is perfectly represented in the novel Shane, in which the narration and perspective of the story come from the perspective of the youthful Bob. Through the story, the reader is reminded of the possibilities and wonders of childhood. Today, before I began my hour long meditation, I reflected on my perspectives of the World and realized that despite my many routines and rituals, meditation has aided in retrieving some of that childish and magical perspectives of the World.
In the story Shane, Bob is fascinated and excited by everything that happens around him. Because everything is new to him, he is a careful observer. When the stranger Shane rides towards his house, Bob watches “in wonder.” Even Shane complements this attribute in Bob. Later, Bob describes his Summer at home with the guest as the best Summer of his life. Through the eyes of Bob, Shane is perceived as a larger-than-life superhero. For Bob, the world is new and exciting. However with age, people tend to become used to their surroundings and routines, and often view the day as a means for accomplishing daily goals, rather than a platform for discovery. But does growing older mean the magic is gone forever?
My experience with meditation this semester has proven that the magical perspective of the World can be rekindled. As I was walking towards the Shambala Center, I reflected on my own point of view, and questioned whether meditation had shaped my mindset in any particular way. I sat intently and tried my best to clear my mind for the hour period. While walking home, I realized that much had changed. Meditation has definitely helped lessen my load of daily stressors, and aided in acceptance. For instance, last year and during the beginning of the semester, I found myself wrapped up in what needed to be accomplished. This typically consisted of homework, studying, eating, and sleeping. This mindset left me oblivious to the marvels of the world around me. Through meditation I believe I have let go of a lot of those anxieties. For example, I am enjoying the sights of Fall (the colors in the trees and the fallen leaves), exploring a new city, and meeting new friends. While I am still concerned with school work, my perspective of life has been positively adjusted. This perspective can be likened to Bob's, because I am breaking free of the daily routines of daily life, in order to find time for discovery and adventure.
Growing older may certainly include new responsibilities and daily routines, however the magical perspective of childhood may not be lost forever. The practice of meditation, or possibly just an open mind, can allow one to recuperate this playful outlook on life. One can either fall prey to the daily grind, or they can chose to keep their eyes open to new experiences that await them each day. As for me, I'd prefer to experience life through the eyes of young Bob any day.