Balance: Noun,
An even distribution of weight enabling someone or something to remain upright and steady.
Stability of ones mind and feelings
A condition in which different elements are equal or in correct proportions

I used to have a 22 foot Catalina sailboat for close to 20 years. It was the place I went when every place else looked hostile and out of balance, which is most places. I would set sail out of Duxbury Harbor in Massachusetts as early in the morning as possible and come back after the sun had set.

I never took sailing lessons, but picked it up on my own. The wind, waves and tides are great teachers. As I sat at the tiller trimming the sails to get the optimum balance and fill the sails to move forward through the water there’s a sense of being with the winds that blow and the currents underneath trying to push the boat in a direction opposed to where I wanted to go. I was always tweaking the sails and/or tiller and sometimes cranking up the motor as a last resort.

The splashing of the waves against the hull, seagulls calling out their reasons for being, the flapping sails and warmth of the sun were meditation. I have never experienced a better practice for being in the moment, calmness and inducing a sense of joy and being completely balanced in body/mind/spirit than sailing. Running and the experience of ‘runners high’ runs a close second. Yoga, Zen and other modalities don’t even begin to measure up.

What’s my point?

I don’t know. I’ve been thinking about Balance lately and how out of balance things are for me these past years. All my efforts and non-efforts to tweak the tiller and sails to regain my course have not worked. There’s an uneven distribution of weight that I have yet to locate and correct.

I don’t hear the fat lady singing so, keep trying I guess. (oops…is that an incorrect body-positive comment these days?)



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