What exactly are we trying to attain through meditation?
My aim is to experience ‘being’ without thoughts, in a state of alert, awake, awareness. In this state of awareness, I experience peace, stillness, silence and a sense of presence. I notice thoughts and sensations arising from the stillness and watch them subside back into the stillness without getting involved in the activity.
My advice is to choose the simplest meditation method, one that can be used anywhere.
It is so tempting to try many different meditation techniques. This is what the mind wants us to do to avoid losing control. The mind wants to be entertained and can’t bear the idea of not thinking.
I use the method of engaging the mind with the breath, like this:
– I sit upright in a quiet place, and close my eyes
– I take control of my breathing, four big in and out breaths as if I was about to blow up a balloon
– I then allow my breathing to continue without my control, and I notice different qualities of my breathing for a few moments. Maybe I become aware of the air passing through my nose or mouth, or notice my belly moving
– I next pay attention to the rhythm of my breathing. As the breathing rate slows down, I notice the in breath and out breath, and become aware of the space after the outbreath. I watch this for a few moments.
– I notice that my thoughts have quieted down.
– I then relax into the space
Now I am alert, aware of stillness, silence and feel totally at ease. It is a state of being, with nothing to do. Delicious!!
As thoughts arise, I notice them come and go.
I return to simply being.
When this simple technique is used once a day for ten to twenty minutes, it brings about significant changes in one’s life. It isn’t a one-time quick fix, but it is really worth doing on a regular basis. Think of it as a treat for yourself!!