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Shotgun Meditation

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A few weeks ago I went with my son to a skeet shooting range. Guns are not my passion, but they are for my son, and we went to a public range, where they rent you all the equipment, to indulge his desire. They waited until enough people joined the group and then a guide walked them through the technique and set up the targets. I, meanwhile, sat on the bench under a tree and watched, and heard, the process evolve. In between shouts of “PULL” and the blast of a shotgun, I wondered if it would be possible to meditate under these conditions. I had heard rumors of monks who could attain such a deep meditation that you could fire a gun within inches of their ears and they would not even flinch. Really?! Was this possible? I slowly closed my eyes, and started with the tools of mantra and visualization. A shotgun fired and my eyes flew open. I started this process again, this time with more success. While I didn’t achieve the state of a monk, I did notice I was able to lessen the immediate reaction and drown out the noise to a point. I have to say I won’t be trying this again, but it was an interesting experience.