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Too young to meditate…
Too bad to meditate…
Too in love to meditate…
Too busy to meditate…
Too worried to meditate…
Too sick to meditate…
Too excited to meditate…
Too tired to meditate…
Too late to meditate!

-Unknown Source

“All man’s miseries derive from not being able to sit quietly in a room alone” – Blasie Pascal (French Mathematician)

The peace and tranquility you will feel after a 20 mins practice will infuse every remaining minute of your day.

You will be more patient in your relationships, more serene at the office, and more happy when you are alone. Meditation helps you to be a far better parent, life partner, business person, and friend. You cannot afford not to discover this 5,000 year old training discipline.

The earlier posts had been extract from books written by master meditator. Theory is all well and good, but in the end it is action that matters. As there is a saying ” you can’t get rich counting your neighbour’s money.”

Action begins with meditation. For if action is to have maximum impact and maximum value, it must be properly motivated and properly directed. Is must be compassionate, wise, focused, right- minded. Meditation is the activity which summons up these qualities. To put it in a positive way: What wonderful human creation in the world today is not the product of effort, patience, wisdom and generosity of spirit. It is positively worthwhile spending time cultivating our awarenss and deeper sensitivity.

” To be fully alive is to be fully awake”

The most common image of a meditator is someone sitting, cross-legged with eyes closed, back straight and hands gently resting on the knees. There are a variation of meditation, silent meditations, walking meditations, chanting meditations, meditations which focus on objects, meditations which don’t focus on anything… What they all have in common is a process and an aim:

Observing the mind

Calming the mind

Clearing the mind

Focusing the mind

Try to be quiet…. but before long a thought will cross your mind. There’s no need to do anything except be aware of it. If you are having a stressful time you will probably observe further thoughts. Worries, doubts and fears may even begin to circle round and round. Like a dog chasing its own tail, getting nowhere. Do note that this is what happens when most of us started practicing meditation! They have been learned or acquired. They can, therefore be “unlearned” and replaced with happier, more peaceful and productive states of mind. But first we have to look at them, realize that they are not so bad after all.

We have to observe how our mind works.

To do this we have to calm the mind, to collect it and ‘ bring it home’. This is a classical form of  “calming” or “serenity” meditation, involves focusing on the breath and carefully monitoring the process of respiration. Each full cycle of breathing in and out is counted until a number (normally 10), then begins again at zero. It will be difficult to complete this exercise without the mind wandering. When this happen, simply bring the attention back to the breath and resume the exercise.

As the power of concentration is strengthened through daily practice the mind becomes calmer and clearer, more “together”.

There are 3 principles that are really basic to meditation:

1) The right intention: You have to make up your mind that you’re going to let go of all thoughts and preoccupations dealing with the world. You aren’t going to keep them to think about. Every thought and concept dealing with the past or future is an affair of the world. Make up your mind that you’re not going to do one thing right now, just the work of meditating and nothing else. In other words, you are going to work on the immediate present. This is called right intention.

2) The right object: This means the right theme or focal point of the mind. We’re going to look at the four properties that make up the body: the properties of earth, water, wind and fire. The earth property covers the hard parts of the body such as the bones. The water property covers the liquid parts, such as urine, saliva, blood. The fire property covers the heat and warmth in the body. The wind property covers the feeling of energy that flow in the body, such as breath. Of all these properties, the most important one is the wind property or the breath. If other parts of the body get damaged – say eyes going blind, ears go deaf, our arms and legs get broken – it can still survive. But if it doesn’t have breath, we are dead. So the breath is an important object because it forms a basis for our awareness.

3) The right quality: This means the feelings of comfort or discomfort that arise in the body. When you take care of the in-and-out breath so that it flows freely through the various part of the body, it’ll give rise to results. Take good note of whether the results that the body and mind reap from the breath are good or bad. Does the body feel open and at ease or does it feel tight and constricted? Does the mind feel calm, quiet and pleasant or is it irritated, distracted and chaotic? If the body and mind feel at ease, that counts as good results. If the opposite is true, it counts as bad results. So you have to gain a sense of how to adjust the breath so that it becomes comfortable.

As for the right qualities of the mind, those are mindfulness and alertness.

Try to keep following these three basic principles every time you practice concentration. Only then will you get results that are full and correct. As for the rewards of concentration, there are lots of them.

The Heightened Mind

translated from Thai

This talk is first given on 6 July 1956 by Ajahn Lee


more basic principles of sitting in meditation for newcomers who’ve not done it before 🙂