Finding Peace in NYC

New York City is a busy place. The potentially peaceful ebb and flow of living here often feels replaced with an insistent hustle and bustle. The stresses of work, family, relationships, commuting, and more fill up our heads so much that we forget to take time for quiet focus. Sometimes the city feels like a bubble, and our context of the largeness of life is reduced as a result.

While I find solace through photography, I have been seeking new possible sources for clarity of mind. And so yesterday I found myself at the Transcendental Meditation Center on Madison Ave to hear a free introductory seminar. I have incorporated various meditations and rituals into my life, but I have never practiced something quite so established in tradition and history-and as I learned-science, too.

While I have not yet learned the technique itself, it was illuminating to be in a room with other like-minded individuals, all in search of peace and clarity for various reasons: new business ventures, juggling the demands of family and work, struggles with depression and anxiety. Might the solution come with two silent meditations a day? Could this practice provide the mental anchors to keep me rooted in something deeper and less attached to the stresses that easily populate my thinking?

As David Lynch writes in his book Catching the Big Fish, meditation has provided him the ability to reach the deeper ideas that he incorporates into his art. While this is not an endorsement for Transcendental Meditation, it is an invitation to explore similar ideas for yourself. Each person has his or her own unique path, but sometimes it might take a bit of searching to find it. The rewards of framing your lived experience in a peaceful and less-stressed context certainly seem worth it.