Close your eyes and try thinking about nothing: what happens?
It’s counter-intuitive, but awake or asleep our brains are driven to be doing something. It’s a surprise to most people to realize how little control they have over their own minds, an observation which may explain why the behavior of people on this planet, and our own behavior, is so frustrating.
Meditation is one way to learn to control one’s own mind better, a skill that would seem to be more important than most people consider it. If you can’t control your own mind, you are lost. Or perhaps you disagree?
I first started meditating when I was 16, my whole family did a course on transcendental meditation, where you’re assigned a special word which you focus on and repeat constantly in your mind. I found it really helpful when I was doing my GCSEs; but it was too much effort when my ME became very severe and I couldn’t concentrate in the same way.
I really got into meditation when I was 21 and started having reiki, to help with the ME. It didn’t cure me; but the relaxation I got from both the reiki and meditation really helped me. I’m not one of those focus on your breathing, still your mind, kind of meditators. I like visualisations, not quite as internally calming; but I find them really inspiring. My first proper visualisation meditation was imagining I was swimming with dolphins and it was incredible, it felt so real. From there I graduated to going on a journey. My reiki healer would start me off, talking me through an introduction: going into a field, garden or forest and then leaving me to see where I went from there. I’ve been on some amazing journeys in my mind, going to incredible places my body could never take me and I love doing them, they give me such a buzz.
I’ve learnt so much about myself through doing these mediations, I have come to terms with things going on in my past and present and there’s a wisdom you can get from meditating, which never comes through when your busy.
My goal at the moment is to meditate for twenty minutes a day, a habit that I’d got out of. It takes effort to switch into it; but now I’m back in the habit, I’m remembering just how helpful and mentally refreshing I find it.
For anybody that’s interested in trying meditation; but doesn’t know where to start, or just can’t get into the tranquil stillness of other forms of meditation, I’d recommend getting a guided meditation CD. I have tried lots of different ones, Glen Harrold does some really good, easy to follow ones. The key is to just go with it, enjoy the journey and the experience. You do have to let go and relax into it; but you’re in a room on your own, with your eyes closed, so there’s nothing to hold you back and no reason to be embarrassed.
Who wouldn’t want to go on an adventure without ever having to move? Got to go now, I’m off to climb a mountain, or maybe explore a crystal cave…who knows, I’ll see where my mediation takes me.