on 
Meditation

Meditation is not about doing something. Just being - Anandmurti Gurumaa

WHAT IS MEDITATION? WHAT MEDITATION IS NOT!
Meditation is not contemplation. Meditation is not concentration. Meditation is not about doing something; rather it is about doing nothing. Meditation is a state of awakened awareness.  Anything that is experienced by the mind cannot be meditation. Whatever we do, is done through our mind. And releasing ourselves from the clutches of our mind is called meditation. Meditation is not a state where you are fighting with your thoughts, where you are fighting with your memories, where you are fighting with your urges, where you are still fighting with your bodily sensations. When all modifications, all fluctuations of the mind are gone – now that is, the state of meditation. Having thus transcended the mind, we are one with our real Self. Meditation becomes an antidote for the many ailments that our mind and body undergoes in this stressful life. The transformation that comes from the regular practice of meditation is gradual but certain. The benefits from meditation are indeed manifold.

SHARPEN YOUR ATTENTION
In order to experience a state of meditation, we need to first understand the intricacies of the mind (how the mind works) and become familiar with the concept of awareness. Once we know how a thought is formulated, what triggers thoughts, what are the conditions in which mind is prone to generate thoughts, only then can we transcend the labyrinthine web of thoughts and experience the ever-flowing bliss. For this, we need to cultivate and nurture attentiveness, alertness, vigilance and have a finely honed vision – as the Buddha said, "Sharpen your vision like a bowman sharpens his arrow".

UNDERSTAND YOUR MIND
Mind functions at different levels and thoughts are propelled by mind due to habitual conditioning. We expect certain responses from people, situations and when they do not happen as desired, the mind gets disturbed. The agitations of the mind result in great turmoil and this turmoil, this unrest generates a myriad of thoughts. We pay great deal of attention to all sorts of self-centered activities, like the kind of clothes we wear, the fashion we follow, the car we drive, the membership of particular clubs, and so on. But what we fail to pay any attention to is something very important: How does our mind function?

How can just a thought bring upon pain, anguish, jealousy or joy? We ensure that our house is clean but we are least bothered about our cluttered mind. It is futile to clean the outside when your inside is soiled by numerous negativities. Thus, there is a dire need to connect to your inner Self, which is possible only through meditation.

ACT – DON'T REACT
The one who is obsessed with worldly pursuits, the one who is body-oriented, he cannot enter the realm of meditation. We need to develop a distance from our mind and not give in to knee jerk impulsivity. Those who react heedlessly are the ones who live mindlessly. So in a way, we can say that mindful living is living meditatively. Meditation is not just about sitting in padmasana (lotus pose) or just following a routine of yogic asanas. And neither is meditation about various ways of breathing techniques. Meditation includes all of the above and much more. Meditation is transcending the mind, witnessing the mind in all its subtleties.

STOP THE NONSENSE
Once, Mulla Nasruddin thrashed his son black and blue. His son asked him, sobbing: "Father, did your father use to beat you?" Mullah said: "Yes". Then his son asked: "And your grandfather, did he beat your father?" Mullah said: "Yes". "And your great grandfather beat up your grandfather?" "Yes". Then the son shook his head and said: "So when will this nonsense stop?" Our mind is prone to habitual, compulsive thinking and we don't know how to put a stop to this nonsense. Meditation stops this nonsense. But it is a conscious effort. It won't happen just because someone has blessed you or some energy gets transferred and voila! From being a buddhu you become a Buddha! No such 'miracle' happens. It is a path on which you have to take every step in order to clear the dense fog of thoughts. You watch all of the activities happening in your mind yet remain aloof. Once you have achieved this state, then whatever you do will become meditation. Simple tasks like eating, walking, sleeping will change into meditation, giving you the experience of profound peace and contentment. But until this moment is achieved, you need to give quality time and work diligently in order to experience this continual state of meditativeness.

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Meditation is not about doing something.
Just Being.

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