Avenues to Meditation

When you’re a kid, you lay in the grass and watch the clouds going over, and you literally don’t have a thought in your mind.  It’s purely meditation, and we lose that.  Dick Van Dyke

Meditation gets a bad wrap in my opinion.  Whenever I mention it to someone, they usually say something like “I’m too busy.  I don’t have time for that.” or “I tried that and it doesn’t work for me.”  Both of these are valid statements but to me, meditation is a much wider topic than sitting in silence and waiting for a divine answer.

Five years ago, I went to my family doctor and told her that I could not stop focusing on my health.  I felt like a was always waiting for the next shoe to drop.  I had previously experienced frequent relapses that had really shook me to my core.  Any time something felt a little different in my body, my brain went to “Oh no.  It is happening again.”  I didn’t talk about it to people but I was always thinking about it and therefore, not fully present in other conversations in life.  Luckily for me, my family doctor listened and gave me two options to try.  One was an antidepressant to try and the other was to try to meditate.  My first thought was, meditation?  Really?  What is that going to do?  However, I also have a strong dislike of pharmaceutical medication.  I thought, what could it hurt to try meditation?

I tried to listen to music and meditate.  That didn’t work.  All I did was plan my grocery list for the week while music played.  Then I tried guided meditations on YouTube to see if that would help.  It helped a bit but I still wasn’t convinced.  I started thinking about times that I was able to shut off my brain and stop the worrying and planning.  What I thought about instantly was at the end of yoga during your final relaxation.  I spoke to my yoga instructor who said that some people do well with the energy of others around them during meditation.  She told me of a place that provided group guided meditation sessions.  Who knew such a thing even existed?  Apparently there are numerous options for group meditation.  That was the key for me.  It got me into a regular routine of meditation so that now 5 years later, I can meditate in silence or with a guided meditation on my own.  I just needed a kick-start to tell my brain what to do.

The purpose of meditation to me is to shut of the chatter and find a place of silence where you can just be and live for a moment one hundred percent in the present.  There are so many other times in life that I have found that space.  I find it in my garden when I am planting, in the trails while taking my dog for a walk.  I also find that space when I paint and when I sew.  Meditation can look however you want it to.  Maybe sitting in silence is not your thing.  Maybe walking or drawing is your sacred space.  I had lunch with two women yesterday and was talking about the topic of meditation.  One woman said she could not meditate.  We started discussing what she does to find calm.  She right away said that she weaves.  Weaving is her meditation avenue.  It calms her and allows her to feel peaceful and turn off the inner chatter.  The other lady said playing the piano did that for her.

A long time ago I read a quote that praying is what you do to ask your higher being for answers.  Meditation is when you listen for the answers.

What do you do to find that sacred space where you can just be and allow the universe to allow you to see your path?  We all have it within us.

I thought I would include a link for a guided meditation that I have been starting my mornings with lately.  It is from The Mindful Movement.  Try it out.  You never know where you will find that space.

Meditation for Listening Within

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