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Posts Tagged ‘Tuning in to you’

image from totalbalance.com.au

“Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.”
Thich Nhat Hanh, Stepping into Freedom: Rules of Monastic Practice for Novices

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I realise that for many the idea that “A new you” can be attained from something a mundane as meditation may be enough to turn you away completely. What isn’t perhaps as well explained is that meditation can be done in hundreds of ways, not simply sitting still in the lotus position. Also “a new you” is not the aim of meditation, it is tuning into the inner essence and finding peace and clarity in our rushed and hurried world.

Now if I tried to sit in the true lotus position, or even as this lady is I would be crippled as soon as I tried to move. That is if my back hadn’t already told me it was very unhappy – which means in agony. So the experience of attending a traditional yoga or meditation retreat, whilst still pulling me, is simply not on the cards any longer. Even my tarot cards tell me so!

image from http://www.flickr.com A walking meditation along the beach.

The beauty is that meditation can be done any way you like. Yes, many people will say you must have your feet on the ground, you must sit with your spine straight, but suppose that isn’t always possible or practical? What if you don’t have any feet to put on the ground? What if you have a back injury and sitting upright is not possible?

The entire premise reminds me of ‘old school’ church philosophy: you must go to church/mosque/synagogue in order to commune with your deity. Whilst I in no way intend to offend anyone’s personal religious beliefs I have to ask what happened before we built these edifices to worship in? It takes only two people gathered for the same reason to have unity of purpose, and that does not specify inside a dwelling of any kind. In fact I firmly believe that you can commune and worship your deity when you are alone, and possibly achieve a greater closeness than in a crowded ‘house’.

image from lotusflower888.blogspot.com

Which is why meditation can be so useful. It can be done with a group of people and it can be done solo. My husband and I meditate together and it is a wonderful time out of our day together. The main point is that whatever happens is the right thing to happen. I have been told that falling asleep in a meditation group is bad manners, shows disrespect for the facilitator, and yet after being so disappointed at my ‘failures’ to stay awake at times I finally found someone with a different viewpoint. Their premise is that if you fall asleep during meditation it simply means that you need more healing and spirit helps you with that. Beautiful!

My favourite way to ‘get in the zone’ or ‘zone out’ is an exercise from Robert Jordan‘s books for his characters the Aes Sedai.  In my mind’s eye I think of a curled up rose bud and slowly allow it to open until it is fully open. I always use the Peace Rose as it is one of my favourites but any colour would do. I find that by focusing on that I can forget everything else. Perhaps not traditional but it works for me!

image from aikoyoshida.wordpress.com

Of course any pastime which allows you to forget ‘everything’ is a meditation. A walk along the beach, wandering through the bush or forest, sitting on a rock in the sun, doing the ironing, listening to a piece of music, rocking a baby. There isn’t a “one way fits all” meditation. Occasionally it takes a little time to find the one which suits you. Many guided meditations work wonderfully if you need something to help you along.

At the end of the day finding an oasis of peace and tranquility in our daily lives is precious and if we use the tools we have at our disposal we can tune in to that new, calmer person. Insights come which have eluded us and we feel better about not only ourselves but other people and issues as well. If we can do that, even if only for a few moments then we are well on the way to achieving that air of peace and calm we yearn for.

“Meditation is the ultimate mobile device; you can use it anywhere, anytime, unobtrusively.”
Sharon Salzberg, Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation

May you enjoy “Tuning in to a New You” and find you have always been there.

Blessings  Susan

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