Monday, April 17, 2006

Mindful Knitting

As an awkward newcomer to the practice of mindfulness and meditation, I find it particularly difficult to be still and focused on my breath when I am ill. When the respiratory tract is inflammed and its every movement triggers compulsive activity - wiping, blowing, coughing - I find it impossible to find serenity in my breath, yet I need it more than ever. I have never seen this discussed in my reading - perhaps the masters don't contract such mundane things as head colds.

Enter the knitting. Knitting creates a rhythm my disquieted body can fall in step with, rising and falling with the needles. I find a simple stockinette piece best at these times - the long inhalation of the knit row - the corresponding exhalation of the purl.

With that in mind, I began the tunic from the current Vogue Knitting.