Good morning. May this be a day of wonder and joy for you.
Have you noticed that when you do make the time to start your day with meditation, things just flow better, or at least you are more at ease with everything?
Last time we spoke about the three great blessings... being born in a human form, having a hunger for righteousness, and being in relationship with a living example of the Truth. Hope you found something interesting and worthwhile in that.
I love when you have something to share or any questions. So please feel free to post those.
There is no particular theme for today, but I would like to share a few things.
Here are some little tips, things I personally find useful or have heard that others use to their benefit - things to help with the meditation game.
This is an experience I often have and have shared with others, discovering that many others have had the same.
When at a group meditation with a time frame for us to be sitting, often my best moments of true meditation take place once the signal comes that the time is up. Then I let go of trying to sit still, be quiet and stay focused on my object of meditation. Once all of that effort and trying to make it to the end, and wondering how much longer is finished, then I find that everything, body and mind, relax and I discover myself actually in the meditative state. It is so sweet.
The same thing happens in personal meditations some times. If I set a timer my mind can engage in checking to see how I am doing, how much time might be left, am I doing what I want to do, etc. Then the little timer gong rings. Meditation is "over", and that's when the meditation actually starts. So, when I use a timer I try to make sure there is some extra time for me to hang around at the altar after the "time is up."
The mind.... tricky, huh?
Many of the techniques are designed to get the mind focused, to have it disciplined so that it becomes one pointed and is not moved by distractions. Once that happens, meditation arrives. But it is important to know that you really can just relax into meditation without all the "work." Don't insist on that. There are certainly times when we need to make the effort to focus and direct the mind, and that can move us into the meditative state. But there are also times when the mind simply isn't caught up with activity (rajasic) or heavy and dull (tamasic). At those times when the mind is simply in a clear, calm way (satwic) there really isn't any need for effort.
I once told the story here of watching that bird ride the wind. Most of the time it was simply alert attunement to ride that wind current. It was just beautiful. But every now and then it lost the current and then made more active efforts to find the current and get back to the delightful ride. It didn't make wild efforts, but was clear about what it was seeking, to enter into the flow of the current. It then needed to stop those obvious efforts and again ride the current. That still demanded an attentiveness and a special relationship with it. This lesson has been useful in my meditation practice.
So when I am sitting for meditation and decide to repeat a mala or two of my mantra. The meditation is not complete because I have completed the malas. I actually let that be part of the start of the meditation, and then sit afterward... just being with it. Sometimes I find that I am still repeating the mantra. Sometimes the mantra seems to be carrying me, without me repeating it, instead, just hearing it repeating and letting it take my consciousness wherever it might. Sometimes the mantra seems to end, and rather than a repetition I note that there is simply the energy of the mantra, almost like being in wonderful pool of purity, light, bliss energy. No need to be going anywhere. No need to be thinking about it and anything. And then there are times I find myself moved into awareness of things, realizations, understandings, some guidance or insight. I have found it important to not stir the mind up if such things occur. Just be with them, rather than think about them or try to remember them (let me speak a bit more about this in a moment). Then It continues. I get to ride that wind current. Pantajali tells us that yoga is restraining the modifications of the mind-stuff. This is what I am talking about. To stay in the current, be on guard, alert. Restrain the mind's tendency to get involved and stir things up. That will just pull you out of it, away from that beautiful state of union, the yoga.
So now, right after I said to not try to remember things, I want to share that you can also set things up so that you do make note of things... to a degree. If you have some issues you have been trying to understand or you are looking for some understanding or guidance to some questions or "problems" in your life circumstances, it is fair to spend some of you meditation time being open to such insights and guidance. If you have set that intention for your meditation time, then you might want to have notebook and pen handy or a means to do voice recording right there with you at the altar - as part of your meditation time. Then you set the issue(s) you are looking into clearly in your mind, or write them on the paper, or speak them into the recorder. Then let go and just go about your regular mediation practice. If such insights come to you, stay in the meditative state and calmly make note of what has come into your consciousness. But after a while be sure to "shut the book," and from that point on take some "quiet" time with no more interruptions. This can be serve you well. It honors your mind and your life circumstances, gives them respect and attention. But them remembering that you are eternal being, that everything of the world is part of the eternal changing, and is going to keep changing, just let it be and connect with that remembering of your Self. Give that time, too. This will serve you in every way. Give time for that, too.
Please keep love as your way of being. Let it influence everything you do and guide your thinking, your actions and what you say.
Have fun. Love always,