What Is Meditation and How to Do It – In Simple Terms
In this post I am going to explain what is meditation and show you a simple method using which you could perform it even if you have never done it before.
Unlike earlier, meditation has become very popular nowadays, especially due to many new studies that are illuminating the benefits of meditation.
With popularity, myths and misconceptions about this process has also increased.
People have formed their own opinions about meditation and these false notions have become a huge barrier in the path of spiritual progress of this generation.
It is quite obvious – How can a person do something if he is unsure about what is he trying to do?
Another thing that makes me sad is that people have so many speculative judgments about meditation, many a times I have been viewed as a weird guy when I talk about it in front of my friends. Well, I don’t really mind that because for me being “weird” is a natural state whereas what we consider “normal” is actually a mask that people wear to fit into the society.
It is easy to form an opinion about this process, but if you are someone who genuinely wants to know about meditation then I do have something so simple and basic to share which might help you.
What is the most essential thing to know about meditation is that it is not a “concept” or “belief” which you can understand using your logical mind instead it is a natural state which can be only be experienced.
This might sound so simple but that’s the truth – Meditation is the state of being completely present in the moment.
What being present in the “now” moment means is to get free of the “self talks” and become attentive to what you are doing right now.
So, a kid playing hide and seek being fully involved in the game is experiencing deeper meditation than a person sitting in lotus posture in Himalayas with his mind saying “yes I am meditating!”.
Purpose of meditation is to maintain the state of “thoughtless awareness”, where you are so intensely focused in the “Now” moment that thoughts ceases to exist there.
A Simple Meditation Technique for Everyone
As I have discussed above, we will just try to become more present in the moment by doing this without aiming for any “special state”.
When it comes to meditation, there is no destination to reach.
The thoughtless awareness state to which I referred earlier is not any future event for which you have to strive; it is something which happens automatically when you are highly alert of your inner happenings.
Your meditation is successful even if you get to stay there for 10-20 seconds during the whole session (don’t keep track of time; I am just using an example).
Please don’t form a conclusion that you have to stop your thoughts; you should never try to do that.
Your job is to be aware of your mind activity as much as possible and your attentiveness will naturally slow down the thought stream.
Before meditating don’t keep your stomach full, but also ensure that you are not hungry or thirsty.
Sitting in crossed legged position (lotus posture) is recommended but, you can prefer a posture that is comfortable to you, just make sure to keep your spine erect.
Now, take a few deep breaths for about 5 minutes or till you feel relaxed. Start observing your thoughts without getting actively involved in it, you will lose your alertness every now and then, but don’t regret about that because it is completely natural even for those who have meditated for years.
Try to maintain your awareness by just watching the thoughts come and go, once you will learn to maintain the heightened awareness with practice, you will fluctuate from “thoughtlessness” to “thoughts” frequently.
As a beginner, in every session it will take time for you to even discern that you are carried away by your thoughts, but your progress will be determined by how quickly you are able to become alert once again.
This doesn’t mean that you have to forcefully do it so that you can master it quickly because it is impossible master it.
There is no end to the spiritual growth unless one gets enlightened, however we can never know if there really is some state such as enlightenment until we get there. We are just doing this to safeguard our “inner peace” from the external influences.
Meditation is about surrendering not fighting; don’t make a mistake of feeling disheartened because you find yourself mesmerized by thoughts. Be happy that you at least know that your mind is highly dominated by thoughts unlike earlier when you were totally unaware of it like most people.
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