I’m a Facebook junkie. I post. I read recent posts. I send messages, upload photos, visit walls. I like how I can keep up-to-date with my nieces or college friends, logging in at any time of day, even at the insomnia hour between 3:00 and 4:00 am.
Something yogic exists in the in-the-moment aspect of reading and writing FB posts. I feel I’ve been invited to share where someone goes, what his or her current status is, what’s going on.
A letter from my niece, Kate, however, is shedding light on my view. A letter, yes. The kind written by hand with a pen on sheets of paper, folded into an envelope that carries a stamp and gets delivered by actual post to a real mailbox with a hinged metal door.
The difference between posts and the letter I received by post, besides the tactile feel of holding the words Kate wrote, derives from the words themselves. The sentences express more than a quick rehash of what my niece has been up to. I could tell she’d taken her time, thought about what she wanted to say, mulled it over, and shared with me not so much the week’s high and low points but how she felt about them. The yogic quality of this letter taps in to her moments but also to an awareness and a witnessing of her life in those moments.
My new yogic view of reading my FB home page is that it’s akin to holding a pose, both call on immediate and focused attention. Reading Kate’s letter, however, compares more to yogic breathing. Both bring a depth of mindfulness to the immediate moment.
Oh, I’ll still log in to my FB page daily, just as I work on various poses each day. I will also pause to consider, breathe in life’s energy, allow thoughts to flow on to paper. I will write more letters.