Begin at the beginning, end at the end refers to a very practical and straight foward practice that I recommend to everyone. (excerpt by Norman Fischer, Training in Compassion: Zen Teachings of the Practice of Lojong, Shambhala Publications Inc., 2013)
Just like a garden bed, seeds can be planted in our mind to either flourish or be prevented from taking root. This all depends on the how receptive and fertile the garden bed (of the mind) is at any given [...]
Listening sometimes means hearing a lot of noise. New practitioners of meditation can attest to this. Sit down, turn your attention inwardly and the sound of a million disparate voices, songs and static fill your awareness.
What happens when we are not fully rooted in our bodies, but free floating in our thinking minds? It can be an uncomfortable scenario that I'll illustrate with metaphors to share what I mean. Imagine your thinking mind is just like a balloon - then, imagine the balloon being blown around in a sky full of thunderstorms - not that great of a picture! Imagine the thinking mind as a balloon getting caught in a hurricane, or frozen in a snowstorm either way, it's not easy to stay afloat, or not be damaged, nor is it easy to have any kind of ground to land on. It's completely unsafe and harrowing to be a like a (thinking mind) balloon in these situations, imagine the stress and fatigue!