When you hear the word meditation, you probably think of some airy-fairy, hippie-dippie, unrealistic, fluffy activity that involves sitting under a tree until you “drink the kool-aid.”
I get it.
I’m an aerospace engineering graduate and probably the most analytical, logical person there is.
I guess that’s why you gotta love the irony that I’m sitting here writing this article as a, now, Meditation Teacher & Educator, whose primary focus is to help people fall in love with the idea.
What started off as laughable, is now the primary guiding light in my life. Thankfully, due to my stubbornness in needing logic and reason to believe in anything, I’ve been given a phenomenal opportunity to lead others in making sense of this seemingly nonsensical practice (at least in the western world that is).
The journey has been long and windy, including many moments of wanting to seriously tear my eyes out when trying to sit still, as well as a trip to India where I considered becoming a monk, only to run home shortly after finding out I may never be able to drink or have sex again. While all these experiences have greatly impacted where I am today, I’ve come to find meditation can be far more simpler than what it’s made out to be.
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Now before we start diving into the hows of doing it, it’s important we set the context around what exactly it is.
- Meditation is not an answer, it’s a tool. Just because you can meditate, doesn’t mean you’ve somehow figured out how to always win in this thing called life. In fact, my biggest ‘Aha’ was realizing that meditation really just trains you on how to lose with class. Life is relative, meaning it takes the bad to understand the good. In addition, if we were to know how it was all going to pan out, we might as well just be living in the past – which we fully know would not be very exciting after a while. So really, if we put it all together it comes down to the journey. And within that journey, meditation just teaches you how to navigate life in a less stressful and more enjoyable way.
- Meditation is unique to you. While there are books and resources that claim to be THE way to meditate, any perceived ownership over the idea is complete BS. The definition itself proves this – meditate: to engage in contemplation or reflection / to engage in mental exercise for the purpose of reaching a heightened level of spiritual awareness / to focus one’s thoughts on / to plan or project in the mind. As mentioned in the previous point, meditation is really just a tool and is applied differently by everyone who uses it. There may be some common elements that help people get into a better ‘state’ of stillness or contemplation; ultimately though, each person adds their own style or flare to it. So don’t panic if you can’t sit in a lotus pose or you breathe worst than Darth Vader, go at YOUR pace and enjoy YOUR journey into self-awareness.
Meditation is the medication of the future.
Everything that happens in our lives has to be processed in the mind. EVERYTHING. Consider that for a moment. Not one occurrence, circumstance or situation can escape the mind. With that being the case, it means that our mind’s have way more power than we give it credit for. I still shake my head in disbelief to think that after all these years, we still allow people to operate one of the most powerful pieces of technology they have, without ever needing to read an instruction manual on how to use it. As we move into a future where technology steals our jobs and Google + Amazon meet every possible survival need we can imagine, it’s going to become that much more important to understand the profound influence our mind has on our health and well-being. Regardless of anyone’s interest now, when the body starts to permanently break down due to burn out, the need to understand and the mind and meditation is inevitable for the future.