The River

I’ve found there are too many duties in life. Whether it be a job, cleaning the house, putting in a yard, or even getting to the doctor when you’re sick, we are constantly inundated with demands. This can take a toll on our productivity and health levels. I started practicing meditation about a year ago in varied forms. Now, I do a textbook form of the Relaxation Response twice a day and it allows me to mentally slow down and analyze life’s rich demands. Prioritization is important but it’s also good to imagine your life as a river. The river just flows. Even as it sleeps, or you might say it never truly sleeps, the river flows to the sea somewhere far away. Until our river passes over the bend (when we die) we can never increase or decrease our flow speed. All we can do, thankfully, is “be the river.” When we make goals and achieve them, we are flowing. When we fail, we are flowing.

We will always have priorities and responsibilities vying for our attention, but we must never forget the reality that our life is a river that we have very little power to change. You might call this concept a surrender and it is. I also see it as an empowering liberation. Once you realize you cannot alter much in your life, you can celebrate what you have “as is.” When your life begins to seem like roaring rapids, you can slow down and accept that life is having its way with you. All you need to do as a river is pay attention to where you are going. I think you’ll see more beauty than you ever imagined as you let the river run its course. I also think you’ll find it in places you never thought to look, as well as in the usual focal points. When you don’t slow down and let things flow, you are blind to the beauty of life.

Author: Damien Riley

I'm a blogger, film critic, & podcaster with an MA in English from California State University, Fullerton. I teach public school, 4th grade as my primary occupation. My views on films and life are usually headstrong and often 'left of center' on movies and life, but I have respect for the other side. I married my high-desert princess (now my queen). We have 3 children.

5 thoughts on “The River”

  1. I see a small typo with “let the river run it’s course”. It should be of course “its course.” But the main idea is interesting because I used to sit next to a river in my youth and let my mind wander with the flow. An excellent way to medidate; now I do on the beach; it works just as well, especially between 5 and 7 pm. The sunset is unbelievably beautiful on Padre Island.

    1. Hi. I think your comment was flagged as a positive spam message due to the fact that you added another raw html link in the message when you already had a link in the author info you filled out to post. Sorry about that, your comment is fascinating. I’ll need to scour my spam folder more often. Thank you. Yesy I do beliebe meditation heals by slowing down and even stopping the body and mind thereby increasing immunities.

  2. Yes, I tried to post a comment about my experience of meditating during radiation treatment, but it doesn’t appear here. I focussed on the face of the Dalai-Lama and it certainly helped go through the ordeal. His smiling visage gave me comfort and I even thought that he was talking to me (must have been delirious). Anyway, that was a form of meditation that may be of help to more people undergoing unpleasant treatments.

    Yes, I am fine now, no sign of cancer. Self-healing may be?

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