Friday, January 4, 2008

Walking Meditation

Robert, the Umbrella Man walks up and down Pacific Garden Mall in Santa Cruz every day. He wears pink and pearls and carries a tin foil umbrella. He is completely silent and takes tiny, very slow steps as though he is praticing walking meditation.

We're all used to him. It seems the only people who take particular notice and digital camera shots are out of towners.
A few years ago I attended a Natalie Goldberg writing workshop in Tiburon, CA north of San Francisco. Part of our weekend included all 160 of us parading through the upscale seaside town, following Goldberg like ducklings in a zen walking meditation. It took 2 hours to complete a two block "stroll".
There, everyone in town stood to watch us with their digitals and a few smirks.

In this case we were the out of towners and we might as well have been wearing pink and pearls.

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