Meditation to me is much like walking.Both are spiritual,freeing and good for both body and soul. Unfortunately both also require DISCIPLINE.Yuck...
Now I am what you would call a "fair weather walker".The temperature,timing and intensity all hinge on the weather.
To hot,to cold,to wet,to dry,to light or to dark all play a part in whether or not I put on my shoes and brave the great outdoors.
I love walking and feel really great when I'm done,always wondering why I ever doubted the venture in the first place.In the end it is always worth the effort.
Several evenings ago I decided it was time to get serious and start to meditate again.I have not done so in at least 6 months and like walking wonder why I gave up on it.
The past two evening I have tried to invest at least 10 minutes of my time,little to ask out of a 24 hour day I know,in this endeavor.
Now don't get me wrong meditation is a lot harder then one thinks its not just a matter of semi-closing your eyes and clearing your mind its about focus and discipline and learning to get ones flighty mind to relax and be still.
Please realize that I work at a job were I never relax or sit still.Even when I can find a few minutes to eat I'm writing papers,answering phone calls or talking to patients or family members.There is nothing calm about my day.
When I do get home its do dishes,make supper and anything else that needs to be done.run,run,run.
Thursday evening I decided its time to start meditating and stop making excuses.
I started out by lighting a candle,turning off the bedroom lights and sitting on my bed cross legged,yes I can still do that but not for long,with my hands palms up on my knees I tried to remember how to start the process of freeing my soul.
Lets see "Close your eyes slightly then breath".Breathing is always good,listen to you breaths,breath in,breath out.
"Wait am I breathing correctly?",funny I never thought about my rhythm before,oh yeah breath in for 5 seconds breath out for 10 seconds.Nice work "but am I starting to feel light headed?",no I guess not.
OK now relax and think of a word to repeat to help focus."What word?" "any word". how about "peace".O.K.Peace.
Peace,peace no I don't like that word "how about salvation",no there are three syllable in it,I'm only suppose to use two syllables words,one part to inhale on and one on the exhale on."OH FOR GOD SAKE JUST THINK OF A WORD ALREADY!!!"
Oops better start back at the breathing and relaxing part again.
I can honestly say that after 10 minutes of meditation I finally came up with one true minute of broken solitude.
Between rechecking my breathing,arguing with myself over which word to use,remembering not to close my eyes completely and wondering if my picture of Jesus was to close to the candle in the votive holder. It was,to say the least,not pretty
Yesterday when I went to Target I decided to make meditating more exciting.I found a wonderful wooden box to store my things.I bought a Crystal handled lighter to make it special,some incense a glass dish to burn them on and a nice smelling soy candle and most important of all a special pillow to sit on.
Last night,with great anticipation I opened my box and set up all the things I would need to make my meditation experience something even the Eastern world would appreciate.Who knows I might even experience "Nirvana",no not the singing group,the state of mind.
On the lid of the box I placed my candle and incense and light each,so far so good.Then I took my special picture of Jesus the teacher,my favorite and tried to get it to stand up,which it refused to do.Eventually I found a standing picture frame to lean Jesus against and put it between my candle and incense.
Now with the lights off and my pillow in place I sat down,well fell down onto it. For some odd reason the floor seemed allot lower then I remembered.
Now came the breathing part,hey so far so good.Next a word I know "adore" 2 syllables easy to repeat,I think I'm on my way.
With great resolute and relaxation on my side I began to think about God and his mercies,how gracious he is,how thankful I am to him and...how this incense smells like the exhaust of my neighbors wood stove,I thought it said vanilla not wood pile pine.This room smells like a campground and to think I spent...Darn off tract again.
Lets see where was I... oh well back to breathing and repeating..
I think in the end I got 2 good consecutive minutes of praise and thought.
Now I'm beginning to think bed time is not a good time for this.
Alright today is Saturday maybe I'll try this afternoon around 5pm.No that's when I start cooking supper.We'll maybe 4 o'clock,I'm not sure about that time.Maybe after supper would be good,oh wait we're going to the movies tonight.Yes bed time it will have to be.But what if I'm to tired?
Here we go again.Maybe I need to start breathing and relaxing now.
Forgive me God but I am trying,honestly I am.