I have managed to meditate daily, but keeping a fixed time does not work. The “remember!!” wallpaper does not work as you get used to it and reading it does not create that spark in your head.
Meditation does help. Yesterday night I was tried to meditate and was moving in and out of sleep with the mind jerking me back from the brink of sleep. I could lie down in the same position without moving a muscle for almost 20 minutes and trying to keep my mind blank. May be the in and out of sleep was one of the factor. 😀
Meditation – Day 2
It is difficult. Some things that I have realized.
- Doing it sitting is better than doing it sleeping.
- Breathe with your stomach. Rise and fall of stomach gives you something to concentrate on.
- Mind is fleeting and tends to wander (like a stupid maiden of yore). Count 1 while breathing in and 2 while breathing out.
- Meditation does help in concentration by removing trivial thoughts.
I read somewhere today that it takes 21 days of practice to make something a habit. I don’t know what is the scientific basis for this but I am still going to give it a try. I am ridiculously bad in doing planned activity. If the 21 days solution works then it could be a weapon that can be unsheathed for tougher enemies.
I am going to test it out with the most basic and most important of activity. Controlling your thoughts. Also writing a blog each day.
Meditation is supposed to be a very good technique for self control. I will meditate every day for a fixed time and also whenever needed.
- Believe that you will be able to do it. Convincing yourself and removing any doubts is the first step. Writing it down reinforces the message.
- Remember to practice! Everything is lost if you do not even remember that you have to meditate. Make this blog post as the home page of your browser. Whenever you open the browser to waste time, you will be reminded to work! Create a desktop wallpaper that contains the simple message of “Remember!!”.
- Find a calm place when nobody is around you. Turn of your messenger, your email, your mobile and just in a relaxed manner.
- Think about a place that soothes you. Like a place near a brook or somewhere in the mountains. Natural vistas seems to work much better.
- Once you have relaxed, concentrate on your breathing. How it goes in and out….
- Another way is to close your eyes and imagine how you look sitting there. Think of each part of your body and try to go into every details that you can remember.
- Another way is to think of your room, where everything is kept. Also helps in increasing your situational awareness and your memory.
- Another way is to create your memory palace.
- Think of an object. How it looks? How it will look if it is magnified? Hot it looks when viewed from a far distance.
- There will be distracting, trivial thoughts. Recognize them and bring your thoughts back to your breathing. It would be easier in the beginning and tougher as the duration increases.
- Continue this as long as you can. 5 Minutes is the minimum. Do not keep thinking whether 5 mins are up. 😀
- If you are emotionally troubled, identify why it is so. In most cases the reason would be your interaction with someone. Think of a candle flame. Try to put your fear, anxiety, anger, depression into the flame. Imagine how the flame reacts as you pour them in it. Look at yourself putting your emotions into the flame. It also helps you getting a perspective on how trivial the emotion is.
- Think of an abstract problem NOT involving any human relationship or your day to day work. A scientific puzzle, how a thing would work? philosophical problem and contemplate on it. This step is once you have enough practice of meditation and once you have reached a stage when you can maintain your state of peace without any obvious effort. This is very very difficult. The Buddhas of bygone eras reached this stage and used it to contemplate on the questions of existence. You are a few steps below Nirvana if you could get this far!
- While walking or whenever you are free, meditate. In classroom, you can try to visualize how the class looks from different vantage points. Gives you a different perspective. Remember the scene from Dead Poets Society where Robin Williams stands on the desk and asks his students to look at things from different point of view.
This article is not exactly how the traditional way of meditation is supposed to work. You can search for ample such traditional methods. These are my thoughts on what meditation is about and how we should go about doing it. It may not work and I myself have not tried them out (:D), which I intend to do in the next 21 days.