In ancient times, the reason for meditation practice was to search the soul. In today’s era, some people are using meditation as a tool to cure anxiety and stress. The busier you become, the more you need meditation. Yet some people meditate because they want to explore their spiritual path. Whatever reason is there, the core aim of meditation is to become aware of one’s existence. There can be different ways to reach the same destination.
You might have read my earlier article “Meditation for beginners” and started practicing meditation. Yet you are getting this notion that there is no end result? Then you might be doing something wrong.
Let’s explore some more facts:
1. Mediation is all about doing nothing
This is where people get the wrong idea about meditation. They think that they have to do meditation by sitting silently. There is a difference between sitting idle and being silent. When you are trying hard to do nothing, you are still making efforts, thereby you miss the point. Meditation is all about not doing. So stop doing or trying but “be” there at that very moment. Be present and realize the truth that everything happens outside of you; you are there only as an audience.
2. Meditation is not an activity
Don’t think that when you sit idle, you are meditating. Meditation cannot be an activity. It is to be present and realize that there is something invisible inside the body, which is always present and meditation is a stage/state where “you” become one with the whole existence as we are all connected through some greater power, greater energy.
However many people during meditation sitting start fighting against his/her own self – Human beings are full of thoughts. It is our basic nature. Many people complain that they are not capable to stop thinking while meditating. Always remember, you don’t need to fight with your thoughts because it is against your nature. Rather you have to witness these thoughts. Let these thoughts come and go. You just be there and watch. Don’t control thoughts or anything for that matter.
3. Being aware of everything
Be aware, who is it doing meditation? It is you inside the body or the body or the mind? Many people assume the mind is meditating as the mind has to be stopped or focused at one point. It’s not correct. Meditation is about reaching a state where it happens all by itself; Meditation is the manifestation of self-awareness. You don’t have to focus on anything.
Be watchful. Don’t get involved in anything. For eg., you have the body, be aware of your body. You have thoughts – be aware of your thoughts. Don’t fight. Be friendly with your thoughts. Don’t start analyzing your thoughts. Bring consciousness to your life. Read more about consciousness in the article “conscious living”.
Many people are practicing VIPASSANA meditation these days. In VIPASSANA, you have to watch your breath. Some people take watching and focusing as same. But there is a fundamental difference between both. Focusing means make efforts to bring your mind at one point. Whereas watching means to just watch without interference. In VIPASSANA, you need to become watchful, so that you can be aware of who is this watcher.
As a result, you will have a self-realization. Breathing is taking place in the body, and then who is watching it. That watcher is “YOU”. Can your body watch itself? No, it can’t. There has to be someone else inside your body. That someone is “YOU”. “YOU” have this body. “YOU” own this body.
5. You don’t have to search anything
Many have this misconception that in meditation you have to search for something or someone or your own self. However, that is not true. You are always here, present in every moment. Unfortunately, you are not self-aware. People go on searching for something. As a result, they move far away from the truth; The quintessential of their own existence.
You can search for something which is missing. How can one search himself/herself? You don’t need to search for anything, anywhere, yet be self-aware; to be aware of your existence. Meditation is a holistic awakening of yourself.
6. Throw all your emotions and pains out
If you feel that you have so much chaos inside you and you are unable to be present then take some moments before silent sitting, unburden yourself from these emotions and pain. You can express them as a form of dance or simply cry. Don’t suppress emotions. For example, If you have faced a moment of anger during the day, then dispel that anger in some form like hitting a pillow. So that you feel light and be present during silent sitting.
If you have been suppressing emotions for a very long time then instead of suppressing do laughter and cry meditation. Meditation means to be present at the very moment. Emotions are your driving force, so heal your pain first if you have any. Transform that emotional energy and then do the silent sitting. To know more about emotions read another article “Emotions- An unknown territory”. In the case of traumatic experience, it is advisable to take healing therapies before starting the meditation practice.
7. Associate with an experienced spiritual seeker
A person who meditates can guide you very well. Find someone with whom you can discuss your experiences. You don’t need to go to some meditation camps but sharing of experience will definitely help you enhance your experience.
8. Meditation should be celebrating, not a serious affair
Many believe that to meditate means you sit seriously. No! Being silent and being serious are two different things. How can you achieve happiness by being serious? Meditation is all about happiness, celebration, and laughter. Be happy at heart while meditation sitting. Celebrate your watchfulness.
When you do meditation practice, forget about your beliefs, assumptions, conceptions, everything else but yourself. Here “Yourself” is “YOU”, not your body or mind. Body and mind are medium to connect to the outer world. “YOU” who is invisible, residing in this mortal body. When you start practicing, start from awareness then slowly you will move further into other states of mind. Meditation will show you the path. You just have to be present. Everything will take place inevitably. Live consciously and meditate without making it a task. You will feel the changes sooner.
If you need more guidance regarding meditation practice then write to me at [email protected]