If you have been practicing mindfulness in our last article , then you are ready to bring it up a notch higher to meditation. What is meditation? Why is it slowly taking center stage in our modern world?
Meditation is undistracted concentration focused on one point. I would like to add that if you are to focus your mind on something, then focus on something with a positive vibration or energy. Using all that mental power to concentrate on God, the vast blue sea, the infinite sky, or simply repeating and absorbing the meaning of Love, Peace, and Joy may have wonderful effects to one’s whole being. Here are several tips to start off your meditation practice.
- Sit comfortably on a chair. Keep the spine long and erect. The chin must be parallel towards the floor, the hands resting on the thighs with the palms facing up. Keep the eyes locked at the point between the eyebrows. Close the eyes. Bring your full attention to your breath. Slowly lengthen your breathing to relax the body and soon enough the noise in the mind will quiet down.
- In the beginning an untrained and obtuse mind will find it difficult to do this. Remind yourself that through constant practice your attention will become stronger. Maintain your attention to your breath. It sounds rudimentary; nevertheless, the breath provides relaxation that is quintessential to reaching a state of meditation. While focusing on your breath, random thoughts will come visit your mind. That is fine. Acknowledge the thought, let it go, and focus again on your breathing.
- This back and forth tennis match of the mind is part of its strengthening process. Do not feel discouraged. You must be relentless in your effort to bring your attention to one point of focus. A beautiful stream of consciousness flowing in one direction free from distractions. Make that strong resolve to endeavor the mind, immersing it in good thoughts and positive energy and allowing it to transform you. In the beginning much effort is required but as you continue it becomes effortless.
- The key is to do it daily or even twice a day, not 3 times, 4 times or 5 times a week. It has to be practiced daily. The conscious repeated effort ensures your success in the future. Practice makes perfect.
- Start with 5 minutes daily and slowly increase your practice to 30 minutes for the next 6 months. Continue to increase the length and depth of your meditation.
Feel the peace that comes with your practice. Let that peace envelope your whole being and share that peace with everyone as you go about your day.