Welcome to part 4 of how to master Meditation if you missed the others you can read here:
Today is the final blog post in the series. I hope you have enjoyed the others. In this blog, I show you how to handle inner dialogue and chatter masterfully, and I reveal the most powerful secret and a few great methods that will help you become a master-level meditation expert in the shortest amount of time possible.
The “Clear Your Mind” Syndrome
At some point during their meditative journey, almost everyone encounters the dreaded “mind.” And, even before they ever start meditating, most people are cautioned, warned, or instructed to
“clear your mind.”
Most people, including many instructors and teachers, end up turning the mind into an enemy that they have to fight against, resist, or try to shut down. That is the exact opposite of what you should be doing.
Yes, I am aware that (earlier in this report) I said the purpose of meditation is about”cutting down on the mental noise and inner dialogue” so you can access that deeper place inside yourself.
However, your primary focus should not be to “clear your mind” because doing so is almost impossible, especially if you focus directly on doing so.
Of course, if you can quiet your mind, that’s wonderful. But, don’t try to hard to try and do this.
The mind is such a thing that the more you try to quiet it, the more you try to resist its thoughts, the more prevalent and persistent it gets.
As I touched on earlier, your only job during meditation is to observe. Without the need to judge, label, analyze, or change anything. When you let go of the need (or desire) to judge, label or analyze, mental noise and ego simply evaporate.
How to block out the Mental Noise?
Let’s talk about how to handle one of the most common challenges that most people deal with when trying to meditate. Almost immediately after you start meditating, you will find your mind beginning to wander off. Thoughts will come into your head, and before you realize it, you will be lost in reflection. Sometimes, you may catch yourself quickly. And, other times, 30 minutes or more may pass before you realize that you have been thinking about everything you shouldn’t. So, the question is, how do you stop the mind from wandering? How do you stop the endless thought streams that come flooding in as soon as you close your eyes? The big secret is to start observing your thoughts! Yes, it’s as simple as that.
The concept of observing your thoughts may seem a bit weird at first, but it’s quite heartfelt and straightforward. You see, most of us are so caught up in our thoughts all the time, we start thinking and believing that we are our thoughts. And, many of us also think that we are our minds which is not true. You are not your mind, and any negative thoughts that come to mind do not define you. You are the energy that controls your mind and thoughts. That is the beginning of freedom in your mind. It is so easy for our negative thoughts to take over our lives. The more we label, analyze and judge, the more we separate and isolate ourselves from everything and everyone around us. That is one of the reasons meditation is so important.
So, how do we observe our mind and our thoughts?
We don’t do it by fighting or resisting it. We do it by allowing it to be. We give up the need to change what the mind is doing, which is what it always does: think thoughts. And, by allowing our mind to do what it loves to do, and by simply observing each new thought as it comes into our mind, we take their power away. Because what you resist will only persist.
So, by allowing each new thought to come floating in freely, and simply observing what that thought is, we get out of its way so that it can continue floating out and away, just as quickly as it came in. As soon as you notice a new thought pop into your mind, you could get the feeling of… “Ah, there’s another thought. And, this one is about the bills I have to pay. Okay, I will let this thought be, without interfering with it, and just observe. Let’s see what’s next…”
Of course, you won’t be saying those words nor thinking those words specifically. But, that is what your feeling and sense as you observe each new thought float in. Simply observe and let it be. Don’t judge, don’t analyze, and don’t resist. Just watch each thought float away just as quickly as it came in. As you start to do this, you will be in control of your mind – rather than your mind controlling you. And as you continue to do this, you will notice fewer and fewer thoughts are coming in. And, very soon after, you will get to that deeper space of tranquillity, peace and stillness. This is where the magic happens. The only way to get there is just to be and observe anything (or nothing) as it unfolds during your meditative practice. And, the more you do that, the more you practice just observing and being and the more tranquillity you will experience and the deeper you will go. During all of these deeper states, remember only to BE. Enjoy what is. The more you experience the space of stillness you will enjoy the benefits that it will offer to your health.
The Question of “Time”
One of the challenges that I mentioned earlier in the blogs was the “I Don’t Have Time” dilemma. And, I had alluded to the idea that ultimately “time is irrelevant” when meditation is concerned. Also, I had promised to show you how to start meditating during your regular day, if sitting down formally (and closing your eyes) to meditate was not an option for you.
I had mentioned that you could meditate for one hour or one second. When done the way I’d show you, time wouldn’t matter. And, finally, I had advised that if you didn’t have time to meditate because your life is too busy, cluttered, or chaotic, then you had to start meditating.
Let’s discuss this further. And, I’ll also share one more meditation technique that will address the “I don’t have time” issue. The length of time doesn’t matter because the space of stillness itself that you’re entering during meditation is timeless. Time does not exist there. Nor does it have a location or an address.
Now, let’s discuss the alternative meditation method you can use if you don’t have time, space or privacy to sit down to meditate. I call this method the “mindful meditation” you can do this just about anywhere, as you go about your day. If a scheduled, sit-down meditation twice per day is not possible for you, the mindful meditation will be a good substitute. You achieve this by simply bringing awareness into whatever you are doing during your awake state. You simply focus your full attention on whatever it is that you are doing – by being present. Give your full attention to what you are doing without analyzing the process. You simply focus your attention on whatever is in front of you right now without judgement or criticism. Within the process of being fully present, you begin to create space around you that is similar to what you would achieve in your sit down meditation. You can do this when you are shopping or in the office even, even when you are brushing your teeth at home. You simply give full attention to whatever it is that you are doing.
With a little practice, you will be able to feel and sense the underlying stillness anywhere, at any time even if you’re in the middle of chaos. And, that’s kind of the point of this practice (to be able to be still – or “meditate” – while you’re awake and out of your quiet, private space.)
You are becoming aware of the stillness outside of you (in the physical world) by becoming aware of – and connecting with – that place of stillness inside of you. That’s the secret to this conscious meditation.
These little moments of being fully present in what you’re doing – or just being still and aware, wherever you are – may not seem very significant to you right now. Still, they are compelling and very transformative. And, the more you start to bring tiny bits of awareness and presence into your life, as often as you can during any given day, the more you will begin to transform your day, your experience and your life.
Before I bring this 4 part series to an end, let’s explore the question that we started with
What is the true purpose of meditation?
The real purpose of meditation is to simply practice it often—practice sitting in stillness and just being. Whether you do the formal sit-down meditation, ‘present moment’ meditation, walking meditation or guided meditations just practice being still and being.
I hope you enjoyed this 4 Part Meditation blog – I appreciate your time and support. You can access my latest Meditation FREE of charge here – Enjoy!