How Do I Know If I'm Meditating Right ?
🧘🏻♀️ Meditation is a valuable tool that requires investment to be implemented properly. It is an empirical practice whose peculiarity lies, a priori, in the fact that it is difficult to envisage the right direction. It amounts to having to make a journey, in an unknown place, without any means of orientation. It is therefore easy to get lost and/or to doubt one's choices.
The idea of this article is to try to mark out a route and to know if your meditating right so that you don't run out of breath, and to concentrate on the essential: practice ! The path, which I will try to illuminate, represents one of the many ways to approach meditation. The interest being that, whatever the techniques adopted, it is possible to refer to them along the way.
1) Your First Meditation Session
The first meditation session can be quite confusing. There are few situations that propose to completely stop while remaining conscious.
It is likely to be said, "I can't do it, my mind is always wandering..."
As if there were a dizzying peak that one could climb with one's bare hands without any experience.
More than a feeling of powerlessness, this should be the starting point. The static attitude highlights a primary functioning. In silence, mental activity is no different, but surprises by its overwhelming dimension. It then becomes possible to witness this bubbling, which is usually diluted in daily activities.
Normally, the best strategy to avoid getting caught in the drum of our thoughts is "Doing It". So, as soon as we wake up, it is common to go through the many tasks of the day and, like a chess player, anticipate the next ten moves ♟. And then, this frantic race begins, completely mobilizing the mind.
However, the slightest pause sees the resurgence of active thoughts, consisting in talking to oneself, with the despair of being once again caught up in the anxiety inherent in this mechanism.
2) Meditate With A Positive Mind
Based on this observation, a determined will may emerge to no longer allow oneself to be dragged into this permanent forward flight. This is not the most obvious choice because it implies a compelling desire to no longer suffer.
To consider meditation as a way out is a saving grace, and allows one to enter into this fundamental work in a determined manner, as if past workings were ending their cycles. Meditation is the tool that opens this door and allows fresh air to enter 🌬.
In order for this to truly become incarnate, there is a strong predisposition that it is essential to overcome: that of seeing this practice differently than through the lens of success or failure. There is only one element that counts with meditation; to do it, whatever happens, without looking for any short-term profitability.
It is from this moment that the web can be woven that will allow, in a few weeks, to keep the mind at a sufficient distance, drawing a new choice: That of hearing without listening.
👍 Developing a positive attitude towards oneself is the sine qua non condition. I often compare it to the same disposition we might naturally have towards small children or pets. It's about respect, gentleness, patience... The process consists of taking the nose off the glass of identification with the mind-body.
Then, if impatience is felt in the body, and thoughts converge in the same direction, it is a question of welcoming it in this zone of neutrality that we know perfectly well, but which we mainly experience on objects other than ourselves.
3) What If Nothing Happens When I Meditating ?
Of course, the tendency with practice is to wait for something to happen. As if, it would be natural to be pierced by a divine lightning bolt that would take us from a state of sleep to the ultimate wakefulness.
But there is no magic and the many misconceptions that circulate simply show how easy it is to get lost in the creative power of the mind: imagination.
So, how to know if your meditating right ?
It's the other way around. Nothing should happen, because whatever the experience, it will not stay. So soon come, already gone, how can we refer to it ? That is why a meditator will not value it, and will return in presence to what really matters:
Here and now, reality. This is the heart of the practice and anything that departs from it is no longer meditation 🧘♂️.
This makes it clear that there is nothing to be done. The techniques are there to give support to the mind in order to stabilize it. But then they will be abandoned because they are only temporary, reassuring, and channeling this wild mind.
4) Meditate With Good Posture
Once the stupor of the observation described in the first part is over. The natural process being, by dint of sitting down, closing the eyes and observing, for the mind to become resilient.
It is a preliminary element of tangible measure to note this radical change. That is to say, this mind, which after a certain time, permuts as if in a sleep mode. Not that it is no longer there at all, but the thoughts are fewer and more distant.
This is concomitant with the biological slowing down induced by the stagnation which allows the body to relax. This is why the body position is a decisive element, which must make it possible to support the comfort indispensable for immersion 🧠.
As long as the physical remains an obstacle, it is not conceivable to register in the duration on the one hand, and on the other hand, to abandon oneself enough to slide inexorably towards the meditative state.
5) Practice Meditation Daily
When the mechanics described above begin to be well oiled, it is a sign that an important milestone has been reached. That of becoming aware of the indispensable support that practice provides. Each session reinforces a little more the foundations of the entire building.
The possibility emerges, when it is not yet the case, to envisage personal and daily practice. This is done from a determining element; it becomes more difficult not to do so than the opposite.
Indeed, meditation continues after the session, and comes to support this neutral welcoming space in which everything is just passing by, producing a sufficient distance so that the mind does not start circling around: I must, I must, what if ?
This is what meditation is all about. To soothe the management of our daily life by transforming the attention, normally monopolized by the mind through thoughts, sensations, emotions... by turning it towards this pure presence to life itself. In this space of tranquility, decisions become clearer, interactions become more fluid...
🤔 It becomes possible to observe that the outside is indeed a reflection of the inside.
6) Letting Go
The major element of this paradigm shift did not come about by chance. By deliberately cultivating the silence, the appeasement, the tranquility that have always been there, hidden by mental activity, the true self is discovered 🙏.
It is that space that does not move, stable, pure and silent: the refuge.
It is the training that allows not only to remove the virtual blindfold, but above all, by freeing more and more space, to gain confidence in the capacity of life to do by itself. It becomes obvious that interfering outside of spontaneity is biased and distorts the dance.
So it is conceivable to abandon oneself to what is greater than oneself. This is the true freedom that allows one to become the benevolent spectator of what happens, whatever the color, without immediately plunging into the torpor of being a possible victim.
7) Keep Meditating
More concrete parameters will confirm the right direction, such as the weather for example. Time will naturally extend, passing through significant stages. This has no particular value other than to see how practice is becoming simpler.
The desire to do so is another tangible element. This does not mean that there will not be days when it will require some effort, but there will be like a call that, even if sessions are missed, the desire will be all the stronger to go back to it with even more appetite.
The last element will be to realize, when there is a possible break in training, how in a few days the mind will be back in control.
It will then become imperative to find the cause of this annoying buzzing, before realizing that it is the fact of not having practiced for several days that gives back space to old habits.
Tangible elements clarify the direction, which is above all a work of reconciliation with oneself. The more I observe myself in silence 🤫, the more I witness how it works, the more I am at peace with myself, but also with reality by ceasing to want something else or different.
It is essential to understand that this work is natural. The strength of it lies in the training by leaving space for what has just come, what is leaving, to finally realize what is still there...