Meditation revisited

  Meditation is more that just a relaxation technique, it is a precision tool for exploring consciousness and for centuries has been for contemplative practitioners a practice for discerning and reporting findings on inner reality and it’s connection to outer phenomena. Most practitioners discover that it helps one to attain calm, experience a serene lifestyle and definitely shows positive effects and improvement for mental and physical health. We know that it is for many a means to improve one’s life, a way to achieve deep insights into the nature of the mind, our identity and consciousness, which results in unprecedented well- being and as a primer for genuine altruism and compassion. It brings us close to what it’s like to be a human being in this journey we call life! It is an expedition into the frontiers of the mind. The Latin word expeditio, has the connotation of “coming out,freeing oneself”, extricating ourselves from a place in which our feet are stuck. The expedition is about first recognizing that we are stuck in old schemas which lead nowhere and then taking the steps we need to free ourselves from those habitual patterns. So we sit, find a time out, just sit fully alive in our body and mind and drop into states in which we are actively aware of and focused on the reality of the present moment, accepting and acknowledging it without getting caught up in thoughts or emotional reactions to the situation. When we eventually become aware of being hijacked or lost in the contents of the mind stream and internal mental chatter or self talk, we...

UNCONDITIONAL PRESENCE

  Most of us live in a state of continuous contraction and constricted awareness that forms a nucleus of avoidance, attachment or both. Often we develop an identity and view of ourselves and the world based on rejecting experiences we don’t like or grasping onto others. In order to hold on to this identity we develop stories about the way we are or what reality is, stories which in essence are just mental interpretations of our experience, a way of organizing our beliefs and opinions but not the experience itself. Unfortunately one story tends to reinforce another story which creates an increasingly distortion of reality. How do we move from constriction and partial views of reality? One way is to engage in being present with our experience, with what is, in the moment. We call that beginners mind. Often though we have become experts at being ourselves, in the process loosing our ability to be open in a fresh, open minded fashion. The totality of our present experiencing is much larger and richer than anything we can know or describe about it at any given moment. What we notice in meditation practice sometimes are the islands of thoughts where our mind lands in the stream of consciousness, gaps between our thoughts. These gaps can appear to be scary, because they represent absence of control. However these gaps are entry points into non conceptual awareness that is always present. When we can settle into this awareness we are free to be with what is, open, curious, bearing witness(not having any agenda) to our larger unconditioned nature; this is what is...