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What may I have to show after 25 years in meditation?

Have I simply wasted my time or really gained anything worthwhile?

Photo by Ryk Naves on Unsplash

I was 19 when I first learned meditation. I wanted to improve my concentration, while had little idea what it actually took to master this discipline. Naturally, my initial efforts weren’t much of a success, yet it certainly gave me a beginning. Many things happened thereafter and now I am 45.

So, what have I gained through these years by wilfully sticking to meditation even when everything in the environment seemed working to throw me away from it?

6 things, I can say with absolute conviction.

1. A good physical health: As you age, it’s extremely important to stay healthy. Thus no matter what be the pressures in your life, you have to keep your health by your side. Meditation has helped me do that. Most amazingly, when I was younger, my body was so stiff that I couldn’t do a simple forward bend. My hands stayed six inches above my feet no matter how much I tried. This changed at the age of 42 and that was a pleasant surprise for me as well.

2. An
unwavering mental strength:
No
matter what may happen, nothing can now separate me from being meditative in
myself. I live in Mumbai, where the noise levels often get thicker than the air,
besides we don’t have much of a yoga or meditation culture in the family. Yet,
I am now able to stay meditative, almost every moment, without showing
disagreement or dissent and instead finding newer ways to my goal, as required.

3. A decisive emotional balance: This was a big problem for me for so many years. To an extent that at one stage I had stopped hoping that I may ever be able free myself of my emotional distress in this lifetime. Now I am able to smile at it. Yes, sometimes it still gets to my head, yet then I am easily able to bring it down as well. This is something no less than a miracle because otherwise my life has been full of countless arguments and angry interactions. Instead, now it’s mostly meditative thoughts or thoughts of meditation. So certainly a huge transformation.

4. A clear spiritual enlightenment: This was something really beyond imagination. I was never a spiritual kind of person. Plus as shared already that there was no specific culture or pressure for being that in the family either. Instead the focus was always on being good in studies and to grab a good career. That was the preference. I will grow into being spiritual and get to experience the states of being about which great saints and distinguished seers write or describe in their teachings was surely a big gift from the eternal, for which I am truly grateful.

5. A precise sense of purpose: Essentially because this was the other huge problem. I could never figure out what I was made to do in this life, while living in this world and moving around. What was the objective of my existence? This question had jolted me very badly for a long time making me hunt everywhere, testing options in the wilderness, often to a greater emotional distress. Those issues are now long gone.

6. 30 easy meditative methods to help anyone learn meditation. Actually, two things I never liked about meditation. 

  • First, the needless mystic air surrounding the subject. 
  • Second, the popular perception that meditation wasn’t viable in the contemporary world amidst existing lifestyles and prevailing value systems. 

I felt both these points needed a change for better. Thankfully, I had an extremely kind teacher, whose inspiration kept propelling me into this otherwise puzzling as well as vague sounding mission.

They say if you go looking for something and you try really, you find it as well.

In 25 years, I have found everything, except loads of wealth. Nevertheless, somehow I haven’t been short of money ever either. Plus no debts that I can’t pay-off. Thus, I feel it has been a fair deal definitely for pursuing something which made me happy, harmonious and healthy! 

Besides, now I have a real opportunity with me to help others in a space, where minds have been mostly shrouded with mystery and misinformation.

Meditation otherwise is any exercise of mind which lets you retain a peaceful focus within yourself for a good length of time.

When you can do it even for a while, its positive vibes start helping you through other things in life.

Thus 10 minutes, 15 minutes or whatever that you can devote; if you simply start practising daily, gradually you start transforming yourself. Further there can be countless ways to get initiated into meditation. You certainly don’t need to cram either big spiritual philosophies or the heavy scriptures or even ancient languages like Sanskrit. In fact you can start with something strikingly simple.

Besides, meditation is all about live experiencing. When you can experience something within yourself then your inquisitiveness grows by itself. Then you become ready to absorb deeper ideas and more refined methods of mind control. The progress hence can move in a gradual manner taking one challenge at a time.

Let me share here a simple meditative exercise to show this in context.

Thankfully, my dear friend and meditation companion, posted this short video on Instagram only some days ago, where she went listening to the tui bird chirping in her garden in New Zealand marking the arrival of spring in her part of the world and this makes my work of introducing this interesting exercise to you really simple.

Video LinkHey Instagram, why are you not YouTube yet? Why such a long code to embed? 🙁 

So, friends, get set to be meditative while listening to the chirping of the birds. 

3 simple steps:

  1. Find yourself a place to sit, like in a garden or a balcony or by a window, where you can listen to the birds chirping.
  2. You have to do nothing special; simply close your eyes and just listen.
  3. Listen for as long as you can and then ask yourself, how it felt.

Well, if you like what you experienced in the first session then practice the same routine every day for two weeks at least. 

In each session then you shall witness some new change coming in for better. Most of all this simple exercise shall make you feel good about yourself, which should shape your day in a positive manner. Anything thereafter would depend simply on your karmic orientation. Further, I will keep telling you what more you can do with this easy exercise as you progress in your practice. 

So, wait no more, instead go and just try. Sit in some quiet corner and listen to the birds chirping for as long as you can. Do this daily for two weeks and observe how it makes you feel within. In the meantime I will share more on the subject through my forthcoming write-ups.

Please know for sure that nothing is ever wasted in attempting a discipline like meditation. Instead every little effort brings proportionate results and freedom from great fears. This fact can be confirmed from sacred scriptures like Bhagwad Gita (Chapter 6 – The yoga of meditation, verse 40) and also now I can confirm after 25 years in the discipline having found 30 easy meditative methods to suit every situation and scaling every challenge.

To be continued…

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    People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

    - MARCUS AURELIUS

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