Recently, I’ve been attending meditation classes, four so far and I’ve cried in two because I have been so overwhelmed with emotion. Good emotion.Its been amazing and to be honest, I’m a little hooked. Being in a room full of people who are all there for the same beautiful purpose is quite powerful. We are all simultaneously looking within, closing down from the outside world for just a little bit. Making peace. The room hums with an unseen energy that I can’t help but gravitate towards.
Last night, we did what was called Open heart meditation. The basic idea is that you smile during your meditation, and for me, it felt so good. I felt happy instantly from the physical act of smiling, as thought it tricked my mind into believing that something was occurring around me that I should be smiling for. Once you have established a constant smile that warms your insides, you move onto (while continuing to smile) holding your hand over your heart and asking it to release whatever it is that may be holding you back (say for instance, jealousy or judgment) and to replace these feelings with a source of love and light so that you can become all that you are.
I started meditating roughly 6 months ago now, on and off but its only recently that its really starting to resinate with me. I don’t do it everyday or even every week for that matter because its not a routine for me, I do it when it feels right. I started because I wanted to know myself better. I wanted to learn why I was feeling what I was. I would just sit with my eyes closed and just listening to my thoughts, observing them without judgement. My ego isn’t allowed in when I meditate, she’s forced out of town by virtue of pure love. I’ve learnt quiet a lot about myself…and my ego for that matter. But there is so much more to it than just listening to my thoughts and I still have so much to learn, so much to practice. So much to feel.
I bet you thought meditation was all about emptying the mind right? Focusing on, well, nothing. This isn’t the case. Sure, its how some (extremely well practiced) people meditate, but its not the only way. And this misunderstanding of meditation seems to be what turns so many people off it. But as you can see from the Open Heart Meditation I attended last night, it can also be a way to cleanse the mind (and heart). A very popular form of meditation is deep breathing, which is extremely relaxing and soothing. When I meditate on my breath I simply say the word ‘love’ when I inhale and ‘gratitude’ when I exhale. I imagine that I am literally breathing in love, and exhaling gratitude. Or sometimes, I count, ‘In, 2, 3, 4 Out, 2, 3, 4″ Another way to meditate is to use traditional mantra’s (or make up your own). In the morning, you can use meditation to set your intentions for the day. The mind is a powerful thing, don’t underestimate the influence of setting intentions and seeing them come true in your mind. There are endless forms of meditation to try; mindfulness meditation, guided meditation, visualisation meditation, and the more advanced transcendental meditation. The list goes on.
As for the benefits of meditation, I know I’ve only just reached the tip of the iceberg. But when something is so powerful that it makes you cry tears of pure happiness, I think you will agree that I’m onto something pretty special.