Doing Nothing together
"It was a little bit of a surprise how peaceful, potent and visceral it was. I think we only took a few minutes but within that short time I was able to stop, truly feel and appreciate where I was in a way that I hadn't really taken the time to do. Time felt suspended and much longer than it actually was... I felt the support and joy of the people in the room with us, and loved the performative nature of the experience too. I also felt rested and centered. It was healing in a way—a respite from the crazy world we're living in by elevating the energy of what is good and possible. I loved it!"
~DN, Gallery Owner
"I loved the experience and what I took away was the gift of nothing in the most beautiful, essential way. I didn't work to let anything in or even attempt to remember anything later. I did nothing, remember nothing. In retrospect there was a the comfort of being just born with only some of my senses working, just resting, feeling comfortable, nothing required of me. Respite. "
~JSA, Retired Professor
"It is a good memory. I don’t remember being bored. Compared to meditation, this felt more integrated with the community."
"I wanted to bring the same kind of approach to this experience that I do with sitting meditation, but it was reframed in that I wasn’t going to a designated meditation space—even to the room in our house where my wife and I do our weekly meditations. In this way it was pleasantly adulterated—attempting to keep meditative focus on the one hand, while wanting to observe the environment on the other hand. These aren’t really the same thing. The focus on mutual solitude, though, removed any concern about contradictory intentions."
"To be free to just sit, in the company of another human, and look at the light shining through the trees, then to close my eyes, and feel the breezes, coming to my senses about how we are not embodied inside an envelope of ourselves in the way we think of the body, but in the space between our breaths, between our microbiomes, on a cellular level. Being together, at that time, was sacred. And being able to just be, in the moment with you, to become part of a bigger picture, and a fiber of the work that connects our time to all of the time spent, time that connects each of us into each other, by just being a part of the overlapping storylines. I recall your welcoming nature, nurturing the goal, feeling my body, and creating time spent. There was nowhere else in that moment that I would have rather been instead."
~MP, Graduate Student
"What really impacted me positively was consciously allowing myself to have the time and do nothing, since we live in a society where the value of people is focused on how much people can do. In this case I feel liberated from that feeling and it makes me feel less heavy in my body. It was difficult for me to accept that I want do nothing for awhile and that was ok and that we still are worthy when we do nothing."
~BG, Community Activist
"A feeling of serenity. I was on maternity leave, and being able to sit in silence was priceless. I need more of that but it is very difficult to make room in my life for it, and also without feeling guilty. What I've taken away from this is that I need to build spaces where I quiet down the running lists in my head, in a guilt-free environment. And that's what Doing Nothing Together provided: the permission to just be. It didn't have a purpose per se. and that's what I enjoyed. The space for things to emerge."
~MVD, UX Researcher
"After a couple moments settling in I relaxed into it, and my senses gradually got more active. I remember the light on the water, sounds of people and dogs entertaining themselves. I feel closer to you because of this time."