Meditating

I am going to start something here. We’ll see if I stick to it. I may not, but then again . . .

I’ve been meditating for 2 months now. Prior to this I had tried but found I could not stay with it. Now its different. I am committed. And I’m loving it. My good wife asked me what I get out of it, does it bring me calm and peace? My teacher asked me to set down goals for it and I told her I don’t do goals. All I can say is I am drawn to it, just I have been drawn to the yoga mat. In fact, it was yoga and the deeper aspects of it my teacher keeps touching on in class that ultimately got me looking more closely at meditating. Meditation is very much a part of yoga.

I have just finished and am starting over again Looking at Mindfulness: Twenty-five Paintings to Change the Way You Live, written by Christophe Andre. Repeatedly in my first reading I wanted to write about it here, but it is complex, not easily done without a lot of words. I’m hoping, as I begin to reread it, I can relate what moves me in a succinct way. We shall see.

Stream in Wales

He uses paintings to help understand what mindfulness and meditation is. Some of the paintings are extremely evocative helping me sense and feel. Too, some of the paintings are simply beautiful pieces of artistry.

So why do I meditate, try to be mindful, beyond just the call I feel to do it? Here from the book are reasons I could now include, though truly I simply was called to it:

  • In today’s world of frantic demands and frenzied connections, our relationship to ourselves often goes untended. We abandon our inner world. The outside world is easier to travel and better signposted.
  • Mindfulness means intensifying our presence to the moment, stilling ourselves to absorb it, instead of escaping it or trying to alter it, through thought or action.
  • Mindfulness does not recommend that we cut ourselves off from the world or retreat to hermitage, nor that we adopt the posture of a sage who is distanced from everything. It simply encourages  us to savor our lives more fully.

And this reason, which I have been able to experience in a very few, brief moments of being completely present while meditating.
         “When we fully live in the present moment, we feel that we are in eternity.”
I didn’t go into meditation knowing this could happen. And it is pure grace that it has. This connection to eternity is not some earth shattering, bell jangling occurrence. It is very simply  being calmly present. And, if it had not been for reading this book, I don’t know that I would have made the connection of those brief moments of presence being connected to eternity. That eternity is really the absence of the mind being connected to anything that induces fear or worry or anything other than being where you are. Simple really – not easily achieved, but simple. And beautiful!

Art student masks in Orvieto garden

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