I took a huge leap and lead a meditation over the phone about a week ago. I was super scared it wouldn’t work. As a leader, there’s a certain aliveness that informs or feeds what happens in the meditation, where it goes, what we do while we’re there. A good meditation is sort of a living entity, it has it’s own flow and feel and it has so much to do with who is there, etc.
So, leading a group of people who I couldn’t see or hear seemed like it could be a recipe for total ho-hummery. Breathe this, visualize that . . . yawn. I was really worried it wouldn’t feel alive. But of course, my own tune-in meditation an hour before the call got me into wherever it is I go that helps me be a good leader and . . .
It worked! I felt it. The peeps felt it. Magic.
In a way, the distance helped me stay more tuned in. When you have student’s bodies around you, in the same room, you can hear their shifting around when legs fall asleep, you can hear their breathing, their runny noses, their (very) occasional farts. And because of my, shall we say, neurotic tendencies these things always create a flash of, “Ack! They’re bored, I’m doing a terrible job, they wish they were somewhere else! But wait, no, it’s ok. Iz, it’s ok. Back to the meditation.” The distance gave me a little relief from that but . . .
Of course! My neurosis just found something else to think about, namely, “Oh my god, have they hung up yet? Did they just say screw it, get up and feed the dog? Am I talking to myself now? Is this the worst meditation ever?” I seriously crack myself up sometimes.
Anyway, it turns out (at least for the one time I’ve done it now) that it’s all the same. I enjoyed the experience, so did my students, and I feel encouraged because it seems that I can actually help people in this way. What a relief!