Subconsciously Annoying Myself
I have a strange “problem,” if that is actually what it is.
Many years ago, I realized that I jiggle my legs to keep myself awake. People thought I was nervous. So did I–until I tried to stop. When I stopped myself, I would find myself falling asleep. Many years later, I realized I was obsessing about things to achieve the same purpose, staying awake. I know this was the intention because, when I stopped, bam, I was asleep. Even currently, I consume caffeine to maintain awakeness. This habit is blatant and super-deliberate. There is no pretense of anything else.
Are these things real problems? They make zazen difficult for me. Perhaps that is a sufficient definition of “problem.” I have struggled my whole life with depression. For me, a big part of depression is the perpetual propensity to snooze in all conditions given half a chance. Right now, I am off any anti-depressants. My mood is fine. But I do want to nap. And the weather has been hibernation-inducing. Perhaps my propensity to snooze is normal in this frozen tundra. I wish I knew what normal was.
I want to be more Zen. I try to sit but then fall asleep. This is why I rebel at the idea of Mindful Based Stress Reduction. For me, it works. Too well. I feel like I am doing it wrong. I just suspect that my experience is not what the Buddha was trying to communicate.