The joy of dicipline
Being the un-diciplined type I have a love/hate relationship with dicipline. It’s killing spontaneity, it’s predictible and thus boring, it’s ridgid and anxious and something done to keep control in lack of more positive means. All bad. On the other hand it’s good for continuety, it’s reliable and often a must for getting results in the long run. All good.
In today’s meditation class we touched the subject of dicipline in practice. I realized that the main benefit, at least for me, is probably that dicipline takes care of ambivalence. If you are die-hard on, say, sitting 15 minutes everyday at 7 pm, there’s no room for wobbling about. You don’t have the option to weigh pro’s and con’s but just sit because that’s on the list. No “maybe better if…I’m feeling a bit…I guess today is…what if it would be better to…”, but just “It’s 7 pm so time to practice 15 minutes”.
The energy spent on hesitation and uncertainty is very inproductive. Applying dicipline can save that for doing the actual practice. To go from there to stating that dicipline is joyous, that’s too big a leap for me. I’ll settle for the possibility that dicipline can save time and energy otherwise spent on stupid rumination. Then again, not being ambivalent could maybe lead to joy just as excessive hesitation can lead to anxiety and, in worst case, depression and confusion.