How the two practices intertwine and show us how to live life more presently
When the surface is still, we can easily see what is underneath. When the storm has passed, it is easy to relax. When the conditions are perfect, we can enjoy the ride.
But what if the surface is rough? What if we are in the midst of the storm? What if the conditions are messy and heavy?
Then it is time to go out and surf!
Life is not about waiting for everything to be perfect. When you are a surfer, you are very aware of that fact.
Most days, there are no perfect conditions. The waves aren’t there waiting for you, helping you hop on. No, you have to go out there, duckdive through the whitewash, find your place in the line up, understand and read the waves and conquer your fears. Then maybe, the ocean will show you a glimpse of her magic and let you hop on.
Surfing shows us so clearly what life is all about. In surfing, you cannot wait for the perfect conditions, otherwise you will hardly ever surf. In surfing you cannot be attached to the outcome, otherwise you will experience only waves of suffering.
We go out there everyday, trying, failing, trying again, failing again, continuing. And then for one short moment, we get it, the perfect wave. The feeling that is indescribable to anyone who has never surfed before, and understood without words to any surfer.
And then, you have to let it go. The ride is over, and you start again. You take this incredible feeling with you, but you can’t cling to it, because the ocean is ever moving and already presenting you with another adventure. You have to come back to the present to continue your journey.
This is what is so beautiful about surfing. It teaches us to be in the moment, to give our best, to meet and accept ourselves exactly as we are. Not being attached to the past. Not longing for an unknown future. But to be here. Now.
It was my practice of Mindfulness Meditation that made me understand this about surfing. Mindfulness Meditation is not about reaching a certain state of enlightenment or bliss. It is about being present, with everything that arises in our lives. With the ups, but also with the downs. Meeting ourselves where we are, and getting to know our inner lives better, so that we do not have to blindly react to emotions, thoughts or external influences. That is why we practice.
And that is what we take with us into the water. The practice of being present. Of immersing ourselves into our passion. Of staying calm in the midst of the chaos. Of fully being there, with our bodies, with the ocean, with our mind and with our breath.
Surfing is not about having perfect conditions all the time. It’s about what we do with the waves the ocean is offering us.
Such is life not about everything being perfect, having no worries, having no thoughts. It’s about being with whatever is.
Not waiting for the storm to pass, but learning how to dance in the rain. Learning how to surf the storm, and enjoy the ride.
Anna & Kolin are Mindfulness Meditation teachers and passionate surfers. They have made it their life mission to help others learn the beautiful practice of Mindfulness Meditation and use it to improve their surfing and be more present on the water.
If you are interested in their trainings and programs, they have an Online Mindfulness Training coming up, where you learn to establish your own meditation practice and more overall mindfulness in your everyday life (and also in surfing) click here. @thebell.center @anna_b.ram @flowingwithkolin