The Interface Zone

Student: I was meditating this morning and found myself distracted by the sounds of my fellow students. Is there a technique to block these distractions so I can concentrate better on my meditation?

Teacher: What do you hope to accomplish with this improved concentration?

Student: I’ll perform my meditations with greater clarity, and this in turn will result in deeper insights.

Teacher: I see. Does any of this deeper insight include the perception that the outer world is not a distraction to the inner world, but rather a catalyst for learning?

Student: So you’re saying that I shouldn’t worry about distractions when I perform my meditations?

Teacher: Isn’t worry the source of your distraction?

Student: I suppose it is. But if these distractions—

Teacher: They are not distractions. They are phenomena of the outer world—vibrations traveling in the ethers from sources you have no control over. That and nothing more.

Student: But these vibrations influence my mind and my ability to concentrate. Isn’t concentration a vital component of successful meditation?

Teacher: Again, what influences your mind is not external vibrations, but your reaction to them.

Student: So how do I change my reaction so I can be more successful in my meditations?

Teacher: Is this issue only relevant to your meditations?

Student: It’s during my mediations that I notice it the most.

Teacher: Do you notice the fear or stress that the external world brings you as well?

Student: Yes.

Teacher: Isn’t this fear akin to a distraction?

Student: I suppose.

Teacher: Yet without it, wouldn’t you have the tendency to lapse into complacency?

Student: I don’t think so.

Teacher: Fear, and all the so-called negative emotions, can represent distractions, but they are catalysts and instigators of action just as well. Are they not?

Student: I see your point, but these distractions and fears are leading me away from my spiritual studies and cause me to behave in a manner not consistent with a spiritual person.