As I prepare to give a talk on meditation I wonder how I would describe meditation to a 4 or 5 years old.
For my children meditation is natural as we have been meditating since they were toddlers, but how to explain the process to individuals who have never experienced it.
The Oxford Learning Dictionaries online define Meditation as “the practice of thinking deeply in silence, especially for religious reasons or in order to make your mind calm”
The word comes from the Latin verb meditari “to think or reflect upon, consider, design, purpose, intend, and “to heal, to cure, to remedy”; near to Greek “meletô: to care for, attend to, study, practise.
Meditation and contemplation have been present in every philosophy and religion, but it can also be traced back to prehistoric age. Some of the earliest written records of meditation date to 1500BC Vedantism (Hindu philosophy). Around 500-600BC in India and China people also began to develop meditative practices.
Fast forward thousand of years, In 1979, a 35-year-old an MIT-trained molecular biologist and student of Buddhist meditation decided to bring Eastern disciplines mindfulness meditation and yoga—to people with chronic health conditions. That was the beginning of mainstream Mindfulness and Meditation.
So, what is meditation?
I feel that meditation is an experience of personal growth. No matter whether you meditate every day, once in your life or just occasionally, every meditation is unique and personal.
When I started meditating, I found it challenging at the beginning. The idea that there was something to do, empty the mind, was only adding stress to my practice. Until I let go and decided to “go with the flow” of what was happening during that time set aside.
Day after day, the experience got better and better. I rediscovered the pleasure of silence, the gift of being with myself without any expectation, the treasure of allowing whatever motion and emotion to come to the surface for release.
I discovered meditation in a moment of grief, there have been many tears in the beginning, somehow, I know meditation preserved my sanity.
Meditation has also gifted me with a higher intuition, more compassion and a stronger bond with my children. We daily spend time, even if for only a few minutes, quietening our minds, listening to our bodies, discussing gratitude and manifesting.
The medical benefits of meditation are innumerable. You can google them to be served with many scientific explanation.
For me, the biggest power of a daily meditation practice is spiritual. It allows me to feel connected to source and all that is, letting go of judgement, expanding kindness, and what I call, “My superhero powers”. More on them in another blog 😉
I will be hosting weekly meditation classes for the month of May, in person in London and online at my website. Do send me a private message to enquire.
Blessings, and happy Pluto retrograde (again, this is for another post).