I have been meditating again recently. I used to do it regularly up until a few years ago. I have been thinking about meditation practice in my work and also about how easy or difficult it might be to meditate as an autistic person and if it would be helpful to manage sensory issues.
Buddhists see suffering as something that we allow to happen through our ungoverned thinking. Suffering happens in the mind. A thing is only as bad or as good as you think it is. For autistic people the world can be a sensory assault, so we suffer because our brains overreact to external stimuli.
I am interested in exploring if meditating can help me manage the suffering of an overstimulated mind. I think that I will have to approach it with baby steps though. Today I was sitting in a cafe and a guy came and sat down at the next table and began to open and eat a bag of crisps. Now the sound of crisp packets rustling drives me crazy, it's utterly awful. I sat there, telling myself to breathe, to accept the noise, to enjoy the challenge.
Yeah, I lasted about 5 minutes. When the guy opened the second packet of crisps I was done and out of there! Baby steps though. Because we should also extend to ourselves compassion in order to have compassion for others. So I recognise how hard it is going to be to try and not let my sensory issues cause me to suffer. Just keep trying.
In terms of my art, I am grappling with half-formed ideas around art and spiritual practice, around mindfulness and making. It's something that I have been exploring for several years, with the Goddess pieces I made after graduating and with work that I have given away to the public, like the Nestbooks project. So some ideas are germinating in the dark of my brain....