Meditation can be a rather elusive, daunting and frustrating task. Modern media says that meditation is ‘clearing your mind’ and ’emptying it of all thoughts.’
Modern media has no clue what the Samsara it’s talking about.
You can’t stop your mind from thinking. Meditation is about learning to disengage from unproductive thoughts. It does not happen overnight and even seasoned practitioners have moments where they have muddled thoughts.
Frequently, my first few moments of meditation are thoughts of everything I’ve yet to accomplish during my day, or past hurts, mistakes, the hot guy I saw while I was walking my dog etc… When you sit down to meditate everything is quiet and it’s natural that your mind is going to run through many unrelated and even unnerving thoughts.
When one of these thoughts flies through your consciousness don’t jump up and try to fix the problem and don’t fixate on moments that have passed or have yet to occur.
Simply say ‘okay.’
‘I didn’t finish the dishes.’ Okay.
‘I tripped in front of that cute guy & now he thinks I’m a total fool.’ Okay.
‘I wonder if they’ll be mad that I never did that thing I said I was going to do.’ Okay.
‘Really hate the new artwork for Catwoman #0. Patriarchy sucks.’ Okay.
‘I can’t believe that horrible thing happened to me.’ Okay.
‘I thought they loved me unconditionally.’ Okay.
‘What am I supposed to do now?’ Okay.
No matter how traumatic the thought, let it pass by. Don’t be upset that you thought it. It’s just a thought. That situation isn’t happening at this very moment. You’re perfectly safe. Acknowledge it. Accept it. Let it go.
This is the trick of mediation. You accept the thoughts you have and do not blindly follow them. You compartmentalize and create a point of stillness. You begin to understand how to exist in a neutral mind. You aren’t overly gullible or overly guarded. Over time, this practice of thought-acceptance will allow you to examine your thoughts and understand your motivations. You will be able to heal and in many instances, prevent further damage.
That point of stillness will help you to act and not react to what happens in your life.
So if you are intimidated by the idea of ‘clearing your mind’ or loading up on incense and mantras you can’t pronounce or understand just remember these two key words.