I used the picture above to demonstrate that this is how most of us see meditation…as a monk walking in high mountains or sitting in a cross-legged posture…spending hours in quiet reflection and considering the purpose of life. Most of us haven’t got time or the interest to spend this time as our lives are very busy with life!
But maybe that is our problem? More people suffer from mental fatigue and the many modern diseases than ever before because of this dis-ease of the mind. We are surrounded by deadlines and have a world of technogy and information that would be something a person of a few decades would not even begin to contemplate!
So simply put, meditation is a progressive quietening of the mind until it reaches a level of pure consciousness – reaching these deeper levels of the mind so we get more rest. If you are looking for more peace, peace is only a perception and you need to train the mind as you do your body so you can see a more clearer reality. Life happens and meditation does not give you the ‘saintly’ qualities as is our perception of monks in robes.
What it does give you is a clearer perspective on how you deal with life so that your journey has less pain and inner conflict and that you can function more effectively. So specifically it gives you –
- Less stress and that peace of mind because this peace of mind should be the most fundamental requirement of life and not something that we strive for?
- A chance to learn to be the observer of our thoughts and therefore having more control of what we think…to make most of our thoughts positive (it has been measured that 70% of our thoughts are negative!)
- A self knowledge that most of the worries we have are about things we can do nothing about because they have either already happened or something that may happen in the future.
- A greater understanding of people by firstly understanding and the acceptance of ourselves. This greater feeling of a connectedness of other people and our surrounding environment also develops this inner peace. It is the feeling of separateness that is the cause of most external and internal conflict today…look at the news on television to understand what I mean!
- An expanding consciousness that releases our creative self…and not just artistically but creating the life that we desire. (We already create the life that we have at present anyway, but learning to create a life by design and not by accident is more desirable?)
If you believe that you haven’t got the time to spend a period of time each day to focus and control your thoughts, then you are a person in most need to this skill.
Gaining a more clearer perspective of reality; having more energy to cope with life; creating the life that you desire are the reasons that best define the purpose of meditation. There are various ways to do this and you need to find the way that best suits you personally, but it should be a daily practice; it takes work but need not be hard work and most of all, expect nothing!
This last statement is the hardest idea to get your mind around, but this is the main reason why most people who try meditation give up…they expect too much and instant results so know that results of your work will take their own time and that you are worth the effort.