Resting in Presence

I sat in my easy chair, feet propped up on the stool. It is such a comfortable place to be. When I bought new furniture after Bob died, I made sure that each place in the great room was comfortable. I had had enough couches and chairs that didn’t work for me.

As I sat there, the thought came to me that this is the waking dream. We have all heard that; but now I tried to get the “feel” of it. I noticed that there was only so much energy I had before I once again lapsed into the mind. The mind knows nothing but itself. It rolls on relentlessly, chasing its tail, thinking that it has “something to do.”

Man cannot do; this is the essential teaching of the Work began by G. I. Gurdjieff. Everything is simply happening in the only way it can happen. To speak personally, two in my family died of cancer; there are only two left. My mind attacks this perceived problem on a daily basis. It restlessly ruminates: “One of us will be the sole survivor. How sad.” And so the mind tries to outrun the problem and of course it never can. This is why awakening to the dilemma is so vital.

How do we accumulate energy to work on ourselves? The only way I have found that works is to enter the silence off and on during any given day. The silence is where the past and future go to die and that offers us a deep relief.

Now I am typing this note to you. Some will nod in agreement, thinking “That’s true. That’s true. I can’t stay awake for very long.”

This fog follows us all day long. It makes us fall into pits of blame, resentment, envy, self-pity, annoyance, complaining. The only way out is through. As Raynor Johnson wrote about the path, “There is light and shadow all the way.”

Few of us are truly on the journey of awakening. Why? Because it leads to our psychic death and that scares the hell out of us. But life at best is scary. Throw out the positive thinking books. Cling only to the silence of now. God has your back. He wrote the book. All we have to do is keep reading it.

Vicki Woodyard


  1. You are so right, Vicki. I had a morning that I could have worked on being in Silence, but fell into the old habits of going to sleep spiritually. However, there were those few precious moments when I turned off the television and felt enveloped in loving silence. Your lovely post is a much-needed reminder of the gift that is always there. We just have to Be.


    1. Yes, truth works in exactly the same way for all of us, no exceptions. An effort must always be made to remember oneself, and there is always a spiritual payoff, even if not seen at the time.


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