How to Meditate
Have you ever wondered what meditation is really about? As meditation has made its way into popular culture, there has been an influx of available information sure to overwhelm the aspiring meditator. Is meditation just for monks? Do I have to sit in full lotus position? What about my current spiritual practice?
How to Get Started
Starting meditation can be a bit daunting — the idea of meditation for beginners can be foreign if now downright intimidating. But now might be the perfect time to forge ahead with the practice. Research shows that cutting through the mental static and focusing your mind this way helps alleviate stress and anxiety, slows aging, improves your attention span — and can even act as a sleep aid. And who doesn't need help with all of the above right now?
For something so simple (what's more straightforward than, say, concentrating on your own breath?), meditation can take effort. Sitting still, as is often involved, isn't necessarily as easy as it sounds. And try to focus on a singular phrase or idea can be tedious for minds used to wandering at will. And then there's the need to sort out what exactly, you're even trying to do.
People often think that it's about having only beautiful thoughts or peaceful states. Meditation is about finding the true self within.
Say, for instance, you've been taking in a steady stream of news. Your mind — no surprise — becomes fixed on all the many what-ifs, such as: What if life never returns to normal? Life becomes very difficult when you are constantly being pulled by your mind in different negative or even positive directions.
Once you find your true self within, you just exist as your most happy and stable mind and you are no longer pulled by the emotions of the events. This is true happiness when there are no stress, anxieties or worries in the mind, even when things happen as they normally would. We must eliminate the unnecessary clutter in the mind. Here is a perfect video that describes why humans have stress and anxieties.
The Human Mind
Christianity tells us we have original and actual sin, and Buddhism tells us everything is in our minds and that what we hold in our minds is karma. All religions tells us to cleanse and empty our minds, but this is often misunderstood. People commonly think that what is meant by this is to abandon or give up what they intended to do.
In Korea, there is a saying that you live according to the minds you have “eaten.” When we eat, the nutrients we need remain in our bodies, and what is not needed is excreted. The mind is what one has been born into, and in much the same way as food, the collective learning and experiences one takes in from birth. These things become one’s ‘self” and dictate how he lives, which is why it is said that you live according to the minds you have eaten.
The experiences of your life become the foundation on which your individual mind is formed.
The human mind is like a video. This means man lives his life in an illusion from birth. It is a comparable to a video because with his eyes, nose, mouth and body, his five senses, he takes pictures of all that he experiences as he lives and stores them inside. These become his ‘self’ and they dictate how he lives and behaves.
Human take pictures of the life they lived, and from those pictures, there are tens of thousands of thoughts. These thoughts are stress and pain. The reason why we must throw away and eliminate is because humans live as a slave to the pictures in their mind.
Learn how to throw away the stress and pain here.
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My Mind Won't Stop Thinking – I Can't Meditate
Over the years we have heard it said over and over again: "I can't meditate." When we ask why, the person usually replies, "My mind won't stop. I just keep thinking. So I don't do it."
Let's clear this confusion up once and for all—your mind does not need to stop thinking in order to meditate. But if you follow the method, the thoughts will naturally go away on its own, leading to more focus.
Then, you ask, "What is all this talk about quieting the mind and not thinking?" Since this is primarily a Meditation for Beginners page, let's keep it simple. The basic point is that humans are stuck inside their mind so it is quite impossible to stop the thoughts since it is happening subconsciously. The restless, unconscious, repetitive mind is a habit. But habits can be eliminated through the practice of eliminating them with this method. The fact is that we need a method to eliminate these thoughts so we can have better focus and still excel in our daily life.
Is a Meditation Teacher Necessary?
We all know that when we want to do something or learn something, it is always best to have a teacher --someone who understands the subject, who can point us in the right direction when needed. This truth is self-evident to anyone in any endeavor. But for some reason, in the West people think it is not necessary to have a meditation teacher when it comes to meditation. This is not the case.
A meditation guide is very important. This is someone who has experienced every aspect of the meditator's journey and can guide that person to overcome difficulties that arise in the mind. They can see where you are stuck and know exactly what to say or do that will further you on your spiritual journey.
Because of the complexity of the journey to find your true self within and achieve enlightenment, a modern meditation guide is an evolutionary necessity. The wise person realizes this and uses a meditation guide to help them through their process.
Meditation Tips for Beginners and Advanced Meditators Alike
Meditate Consistently and Diligently -- The most important advice is to meditate regularly, which means daily for best results. The commitment to a regular, daily practice is very important. There is no shortcut to enlightenment.
Guided Meditation -- Just like anything else, find a good meditation to help you. If you are a beginning meditator, being guided is very important. You will need some guidance about what you are doing.
Make Time for Meditation -- Make sure you choose a time of day that you will not be disturbed. Most people choose early in the morning or late at night. But it really does not matter when you meditate, as long as you can devote a period of time to your practice without being disturbed. Each of us has a unique biorhythm and we know what times are likely to be best for us.
Find a Quiet Space -- If possible, create a space where you can practice your meditation and which you use for nothing else. This could be a spare room or a section of a room.
Body Position -- There's no right or wrong way to meditate. You don't have to perch pretzel-like on a cushion if that isn't comfortable. Try simply sitting with your legs and arms uncrossed, your arms resting on your legs and feet on the floor so that you feel grounded, advises Megan Jones Bell, chief science officer at Headspace, a digital health company that provides guided meditation training. “Remember, the goal is to feel relaxed, comfortable and focused.” However, you shouldn't be too comfortable either. When laying down, it is very easy to get sleepy or fall into your thoughts. You need to be in a position where you can focus well.
Your Mind Will Wander -- And that's OK. One of the biggest misconceptions of meditation is that it has to be done perfectly. The truth is, it just doesn't happen like that immediately. The idea of meditation is to practice the method. Sometimes the mind is busy. Sometimes it's quiet. But over time, as we get better at this, the mind naturally starts to settle down.
Mini Meditations Count, Too -- Meditate for 5-10 min and just throw away your day. Everyday, difficult things come up and there may be anxiety and stress. Even when you can't do a full meditation, you can eliminate the things that bother you throughout the day.
These tips will assist you in generating momentum. Treat your meditation as a sacred act because it is! If you revere it, the results will be even more impressive. Meditation generates a lot of power from within. This power, in turn, affects the world around you. So be wakeful and watch the magic and miracles unfold.