After many years of being curious about meditation in all forms, I finally decided to commit to one this February. I chose a practice from the Vedic tradition and one that presented itself to me at just the right time. I attended a free intro talk, then after looking into a few other options, I decided to jump in for a series of classes to get me started.
I felt I needed something to help focus my energy and I was in search of a practice that I could commit to regularly. Something I could easily integrate into my life now.
In this tradition, one is given a mantra that will carry you through your life. Anyone I've asked that has been given one and taught the basics of meditation in this tradition, remembers theirs, even if they have lost their daily practice, the mantra they remember. I mention this because I have a fear of forgetting things, so it was a matter of great importance to me that I could retain this even if I lost my train of practice along the way. We are instructed not to write it down or share it with anyone, not that there is anything specifically meaningful in words themselves. They are more so sounds, that can morph and reshape as time goes on, just a means to an end, not a reason in itself. I liked the license to lose it and possibly misremember it, but I imagine if I keep up the practice, twice daily, I will also remember it when I'm asked decades from now.
By being brought into the fold, one is encouraged to join for group meditations at least through the first year, to help keep the momentum and let the practice stick. I often think of myself as a lone wolf, but I see the value of meditating in a group. It will also help me to give my schedule more structure, which I crave after years of living as an artist, then as a freelancer, and now my own boss. I need and like some structure to my days, which this practice is giving me.
There are meant to be endless possibilities of benefits, but mainly I liked the idea of clearing away old detritus weighing down my mind and the idea of becoming more myself. I think with giving myself over to the serious study of medicine, I lost a bit of my playfulness. Something I want to find again.
In my short time living with meditation in my life, I've made greater efforts to get back in touch with my artist side. A side that feeds my imagination, heart and soul. I hope to report back in a few months that I have created a habit of meditation, but the rest I'll just wait to find out. Expectations seem to be the death of things, so I will put in the time and see...
If you are curious about Vedic meditation and want to attend a free talk, write me and I will send you information.
Also, I wanted to share a website, where you can sign up for a daily thought written by Jeff Kober, delivered to your inbox. The day I signed up there was a beautiful message and reminder that really resonated. Here is the thought I want to start every morning with:
Today I will see you for what you really are. I will see past all the differences we have in order to recognize within you what I feel also is within me–something divine, something at one with the All–and even if I can’t fully see it, I can behave as if I do.