Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Joy of Meditation

It is amazing to me the amount of people that know about meditation, but how few actually do it. I have many friends that practice yoga, but have never tried meditation. They have no idea what they are missing! The popular notion of meditation is that it is helpful for finding peace and tranquility. And it certainly is. But it is so much more! There is a joy and bliss in meditation that not too many people have experienced or understand.

I began meditating when I was about twenty years old. I was first inspired to meditate after reading a book by Ram Dass called, Be Here Now. The book really made be reflect upon my life and the values that I held. It sparked the beginning of my spiritual awareness. I started practicing a very basic meditation, which consisted of simple breathing awareness techniques. I practiced daily and after several months, I began to experience this state of “lightness”. My entire body would begin to feel “light”, like it wanted to float, and with it; I would experience a feeling of joy. It was not quite a feeling of ecstasy, but more an overall feeling of well-being. And the interesting thing was that after my mediation, the feeling of joy would linger as I began my daily activities. I was very moved by these joyful feelings arising from my meditation, and would talk about it with my friends. Most of my friends knew about meditation, but had never practiced it. They pretty much thought it was just a mental exercise to bring about relaxation. Some of them had tried to practice meditation, but became discouraged when they could not slow down their thought processes. So they usually gave up quickly. I thought that it was sad as they were not willing to make the effort at regular practice and wanted instant results.

Meditation does take time, effort and practice. And so do most things that are worthwhile on this planet. But if you hang in there, it is amazing the amount of joy and peace that meditation brings. Meditation is not just sitting there with nothing going on upstairs. It is not boring! But you have to get pass the normal ebb and flow of the thought processes, before things begin to happen.

In my next blog, I will review some different meditative techniques for people to practice at home that can bring more joy and peace into your life.

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