joshua0: (Default)
[personal profile] joshua0

Tomorrow afternoon, I'm scheduled to get LASIK. I have some trepidation about this. Not, like, worried about the outcome: I'm pretty sure that, on the whole, having a LASIK flap is going to be much safer and much less of a liability than being dependent on corrective optics while I'm outside exploring. To tell the truth, I was planning on doing this last year, and backed off at the last second -- like, the day before I was supposed to come in for measurements. I've worn glasses since I was 6 or so (so, 22 years!), and glasses have just kind of become part of who I am. Who would I be if I didn't have my glasses? Who would I be if I couldn't choose to see or not see?

*   *   *

Tonight, I went and practiced asana at Planet Granite. The same studio I have practiced at for years, the same class I have taken for quite some time, with a teacher I knew well. Sometimes when I practice, I put my glasses on, and see through my glasses. Sometimes when I practice, I very intentionally take my glasses off: let my vision be blurred, as a way of turning inwards. I did today: today would be my last opportunity to do that. It felt like a turning point, and I tried to savor it when I could. The soft defocused view, the warm color temperature of the filtered floor lights, the knowledge that I was practicing in the company of many others, but without the distraction of any in particular ...

Some time ago, I used the metaphor of avidya for glasses with scars on them. When I have my glasses on and I see the outside world with crystalline sharpness, am I seeing reality more clearly, or less clearly? When I take my glasses off, and the outside world is blurred, am I now seeing reality more clearly, or less clearly?

*   *   *

In April, I talked about my experience of a morning practice. I promised myself that I would be honest when I talk about my experience of yoga, rather than trying to cultivate an image, and so it is only right to say: I haven't been doing it recently. In fact, I haven't been sitting at all recently. I've gotten out of the habit of it. Or, really, I couldn't make myself do it. For a while, I was beating myself up about it, feeling guilty after every day that I didn't sit. Then, the weeks went by, with my mala sitting on my cushion, untouched, but at least not unnoticed.

I'm given to believe that it is a very rare individual indeed who does not, at times, struggle with the practice of meditation -- or yoga, in general. I'm certainly not one of them.

I don't know when I'll come back to it. I take some comfort, though, in the knowledge that, like an old friend, it will be there for me when I return.

*   *   *

“You take practice. Practice, practice, practice. That is method.”
— Guruji Pattabhi Jois

Date: 2018-01-11 12:11 pm (UTC)

From: [personal profile] pyxy
Good luck with your LASIK.

Keeping a morning practice has been difficult for me too. The morning is the first and most energetic part of the day and I sometimes find it quite difficult to put that energy aside for a while and just sit. I had partial but not complete success with welding it to the end of my morning routine, but sticking to it is an ongoing struggle.
Date: 2018-01-11 03:23 pm (UTC)

gregh1983: (Default)
From: [personal profile] gregh1983
Whoa, Elly?! Hello! How are you?

(OK, there's no way to make that first line sound anything less than stereotypical and awful, so I won't try it. But it's great to have some interaction with you again!)
Date: 2018-01-11 01:06 pm (UTC)

ikeepaleopard: (Default)
From: [personal profile] ikeepaleopard
I sort of hesitate to post this since you're about to do it anyway, but I was recently looking into getting LASIK and my conclusion was that the problem rate was still unacceptably high compared to the minor annoyance of contact lenses. Curious how you made that decision. Also, good luck! It'll probably be fine.
Date: 2018-01-11 03:00 pm (UTC)

gregh1983: (Default)
From: [personal profile] gregh1983
I'm given to believe that it is a very rare individual indeed who does not, at times, struggle with the practice of

I think you could fill in with anything here, and it would still be true :-)

I'll be interested to know what your experience of LASIK is like, if you feel like sharing it as time goes by afterwards. You're about the third friend I know who's done it.

Your post also reminded me of a book I read once about a guy who got a cochlear implant. At times I think it was a little overwrought, but the book contains a lot of introspective thoughts about being able to control and modify another one of the senses.
Date: 2018-01-12 02:44 pm (UTC)

gregh1983: (Default)
From: [personal profile] gregh1983
Sounds good! (I didn't mean to imply that your stuff was overwrought at all. The "it" referred to the cochlear-implant book.) Good luck today!
Date: 2018-01-12 08:47 pm (UTC)

modgethanc: (Default)
From: [personal profile] modgethanc
enqueuing your face as one i will have to recalibrate for faceblindness soon!!

this post reminds me that i opted for vision insurance for 2018 because i decided for the first time in my life to have eyeball professionals inspect my eyeballs and tell me if there are corrective devices i can install on my face so that i can have actual depth perception instead of just extrapolating the idea of depth perception based on what i assume to be true about the physical world. and also that it's a week into 2018 and i still haven't gotten around to scheduling an appointment because this feels like a weirdly life-shattering change i could make for myself.

(physically, not a permanent one; if i acquire glasses, i can always choose to take them off, but the knowledge of such an option is going to make me a different person)
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