Meditation and mindfulness have been part of my life for the last three years or so, but recently I fell out of practice. This is what made me decide to attend the mindfulness classes we have on campus twice a semester., each time lasting for five weeks I hope that it will be a force for me to start my practices regularly again.
This post is also a part of that reminder. I want to talk about meditation journey so I can remind myself its value in my life.
Here we go.
When people hear the word meditation, they mostly think of a person sitting, eyes closed, and doing nothing. Absolute calmness.
I used to think like that too and I found it not so relatable, being the ‘lets-do-something-all-the-time’ kind of person. But different things in my life forced me into being somewhat of that meditative person, meaning that I became able to do silent meditation more or less comfortably.
But that was not a one-step process. I tried many different types of meditation along the way. Now I believe that there is one for every personality and for every stage we are in.
I started meditation in the form of analysis of my memories (which I talked about in my post on peace with past here). I sat down, focused on an event in my past and analyzed it. It was not the meditation that we mostly think of when we hear the word. But it made me focus on one thing at a time and in detail, rather than having millions of things in my mind. It calmed my mind in this way.
That went on about a year or so.
Then, I needed to move on but I was still not ready for silent meditation. So, I did a lot of guided meditation. I just checked how I felt that day and found a guided meditation video on YouTube, usually 20-30 minutes in length. Say, I was having a low self-esteem a day. I listened to something that made me focus on that that day. This helped me not do cognitive analysis like I used to do in my previous meditation practice. My mind was more relaxed. But I was guided. I still had an external focus point to keep my mind together. I was not yet able to guide myself.
This went on for about several months.
Then, I decided that I did not want to listen to things anymore. So, I decided to go silent. But that was hard. So, I came up with a focus point again. This time, everyday, I imagined my mind, body and soul as three separate entities that had to live together and I talked to them. I asked my mind how it was feeling, same for my body and same for my soul. I even made them hug each other at the of the sessions to instruct my subconscious that all are one. All are me. It kinda worked. It helped me understand and appreciate myself better.
But that fell out of my favor in time. I wanted to do actual silent meditation.
My first attempts at that were ridiculous. It was too hard for me to go on even for five minutes. But in time, with practice, I started being able to go on for 20 minutes, silent, then even an hour at times. Meditating with other people helped too.
Later, for different reasons, I gradually stopped meditating but am starting back again now. In the time period that I did not meditate, I missed it a lot, because now it has become a need for me. I am looking for silence and calmness in my mind.
Do you guys also meditate? If so, how did you start and progress? What methods did you try? If not, do you want to start one day? What do you all think of meditation to be?