Dr. Mercola is writing about meditation this morning. The catch phrase (in his e-mail newsletter) is “Energizes your brain like caffeine, without the adrenaline rush.” Before I clicked the link I thought he was maybe going to talk about MCT (medium chain triglyceride) oil or something similar. But meditation?
All the things talked about in the article are reasonable and make sense. Meditation can work as a remedy for many present day ills. I guess it’s a way of bringing the information about meditative practice to Westerners in a way they can relate to.
I have been a ‘meditation snob.’ I adopted a meditative practice when I was 27 years old, as a young wife and mother. I remember I was ready for it at the time – ready to take on the responsibility and the duty. The form of the practice was Surat Shabd Yoga, the yoga of the sound current. The form was helpful; the rules were reasonable, but fairly strict. The cornerstone was 2 1/2 hours of meditation daily, including meditation with mantra, then listening to the sound current. How to fit 2 1/2 hours of sitting into a day filled with community life, and caring for my 2- and 4-year-old children? Needless to say, I was frequently exhausted, but never in my recollection, hesitant about continuing the practice.
The snobbishness has to do with my thinking the way I learned to meditate at that early age, was the only true way to meditate! I caught myself making snide inner comments when someone might be talking to me about their own experience with meditation. This is only a recent realization, 36 years post beginning that practice!
The underpinnings of the meditation snob understanding was a near-death experience in 2004 that thoroughly and very deeply changed my life. That’s another story. But what happened caused me to stop everything I had been doing to survey who I was, and all of my relations to everything.
In 2005 I stopped meditating 2 1/2 hours a day. I explored more active meditative practices. I learned there were other ways of meditation – and it was years again before I recognized those other things as meditation, still carrying the snob deal with me.
Thank heavens I grew up! And am still growing. Life is a continuum with many occurrences and opportunities for growth. If we’re lucky (and it’s not really a matter of luck either) the state of inquiry will never end.
We have so much to distract us today. Practices such as mindfulness, and meditation in its many, many, and varied forms, are of supreme help. Meditation may just be the ultimate contemporary remedy for what ails us.
If I could say something to anyone contemplating a meditative practice it is that there is no time like today to start. That things WILL change for you. That sticking with the practice for a period of time will bring benefits perhaps untold during the length of practice. That if you stick with it, one day you’ll look back and absolutely wonder at the benefits you’ve reaped from your efforts. I’ve heard it said regarding meditation that there are no efforts left unnoticed. All struggles, ups and downs, are part of the process. And it may not be hard for you! How about that?!
If you’re interested, my study and practice now, along with Kundalini Yoga, is Dzogchen. You can Google it to find more information.