The Final Catastrophe

everything is floating, laurie anderson.jpg

audio meditation
The Final catastrophe

This little meditation on death and insight is inspired by Laurie Anderson’s song, ‘Everything is Floating’. The song and the audio together make a 10 minute reflection that you can add to your daily meditation, or listen to on a walk or commute.

Everything is Floating

And after the storm
I went down to the basement
And everything was floating
Lots of my old keyboards
Thirty projectors
Props from old performances
A fiberglass plane motorcycle
Countless papers and books

And I looked at them floating there
In the shiny dark water, dissolving
All the things I had carefully saved
All my life becoming nothing but junk
And I thought how beautiful
How magic and how catastrophic.”


Life itself is ultimately catastrophic. Mostly we are blissfully unaware that the flood is coming, yet eventually, everything will be washed away.

The storm comes in many forms: death; separation; sickness; loss; humiliation; the list is endless. But there is a tiny constellation in the face of this catastrophe mountain, it’s this - our Dharma practice makes it possible to spot the magic and the beauty that exists alongside the loss and destruction.

Did you know there are two meanings to the word catastrophic?


  1. involving or causing sudden great damage or suffering.

  2. involving a sudden and large-scale alteration in state.

This second meaning, catastrophe as a sudden and major alteration in the state of something, could be likened to awakening. Awakening, you could say, is catastrophic. A storm, a flood, leaving in its wake the beautiful debris of what we always thought was so real and so important.

Find 10 minutes space in your day and listen to the the song below, followed by the meditation -

Everything is Floating - Laurie Anderson and the Kronos Quartet (1.59 mins)

The Final Catastrophe - Audio Meditation (6.33 mins)

This theme and the audio are taken from our latest Pop-up Urban Retreat. If you’d like to come on the next one you can find all the details at Urban Pop-ups.