The Morning Blessing Letters in my book, Enso Morning, were written first as my own morning meditation. For over six months of weekdays I would get up early in the morning and meditate, sometimes after a walk outside, building on over thirty-five years of morning sitting meditation. A rhythm had evolved over the years whereby I would first tune in to the fact that I was alive and felt welcomed by the spirit of the new day, something larger than myself that was not only aware of my existence sitting there on the cushion, but indeed glad to have me sitting there and present for the opening of the day together. This extraordinary bonding – sometimes against all odds because I felt lonely or insignificant or useless – grounded me in the present moment. A natural next step was to do… nothing. But to stay precisely there in the moment that had become still and sacred. Silence naturally ensued. I felt encouraged to just stay there in the stillness, so I did. The silence became a blessing, then a gift came.
It is my hope that you read the Morning Blessing Letters in my book, Enso Morning, to stimulate and deepen your own spiritual and meditation practice. I encourage you to use each paragraph to center yourself in the morning, to give loving attention to each part of yourself as an intentional and practical way to nurture your whole being at the beginning of the day.
The Enso circles that decorate this book are an ancient art form blending art and religion. While these circles are thought of as Buddhist, in fact they have origins in several wisdom traditions, including Hindu, Buddhist and Taoist, making them interfaith in character. For example, in the Hindu tradition a circle represents the wheel of samsara, the cycle of life and death.
Come into these moments of the day by joining life’s process; life is underway. I listen to the jingle of my dog’s collar as she investigates who is still in bed so she can join them; someone comes downstairs, stepping on the one stair tread that gives off a distinctive creak.
Now there is silence, outside and inside. The outside world recedes, drops away, back into the background. Here inside, in the foreground, is stillness, the calm of contemplation, when we look inside and see with new eyes who we are in this moment…
Fine-tune your ears to listen to the messages your body is giving you. Hear what part needs to be scratched, what part calls for a caress, or for a kind thought, and on and on, throughout your whole system.
And listen for your feelings as they whisper to you. You might hear a sigh of sadness, or a growl of anger, or a pant of passion, or a yelp of surprise, or a groan of despair, or a murmur of love. Listen, listen, listen.
While spirit may manifest through any of the five senses, it is part of the sixth and more quiet sense, intuition. Therefore, spirit asks for a certain kind of invitation, a gentle, unrushed availability. Consider how you might offer your spirit an invitation today.
May you hear with welcoming ears today.
Your gift today is to listen
Rev. Jacob Watson, D.Min. is an interfaith minister and spiritual teacher. He helped start Collins Brook School, the Center for Grieving Children and the interfaith Chaplaincy Institute of Maine. Since 1985 he has been a Hospice Volunteer, Chaplain, Board member, trainer and supervisor. He was a grief counselor and a senior staff member of the Elisabeth Kubler-Ross Center, leading Life, Death and Transition workshops nationally and overseas. He is the author of Essence: The Emotional Path to Spirit, and devotes his life to teaching, writing and prayer.
Enso Morning: Daily Meditation Gifts is published by O Books, ISBN: 978-1-78535-298-0 (Paperback) £13.99 $24.95