Meditation with the Financial Times: Tim Parks

February 12, 2011

bookWhat actually is meditation? That thought occasionally crossed my mind in the many years during which I disparaged the practice. I had no idea. The cross-legged statuesqueness of it and the beatific Buddha-smile were enough to put me off. Whatever it was, it stank of prayer. Having escaped my parents’ evangelism, their exorcisms and speaking in tongues, I was more than happy to live as an adult in a world emptied of all things esoteric.

I got busy and used my head and studied and wrote. Life presented itself as a task to which I felt I was just about equal, assuming I gave it absolutely all I had. There was no time for sloppy, … Read more »

Try something quietly profound

November 15, 2010

There is nothing noisier than silence, if your head is full of words. Escape the clamour of the city and at once an excited voice enthuses about the quiet. “How wonderful,” you tell yourself getting out of the car, “to have made it up to the Highlands, to have fled the traffic and the TV and the strident voices round the dinner table. Fantastic!” You strike off along a path through pine trees – isn’t the hush extraordinary! – and before you know it yesterday’s argument with your wife is playing out in your head. How could she have said that! “You’re lucky you still have someone to insult.” That would have been the smart … Read more »