reply to post by GypsK
I've been meditating since I was in my middle 20's, which would make it around 40 years now. I got interested in the idea of stopping conscious
thought as much as possible to see what would evolve once my brain wasn't busy with everyday concerns. My only guidance was the assurance that
meditation's positive effects are cumulative, & not instantaneous, like taking aspirin to cure a headache.
As my interests have changed and/or grown over the years, the meditative state has changed & grown with me. It's easy to get carried away with
descriptions of memorable sessions, but I'll try to hold it to the short version. I've been able to understand how my mind works to pull up
information learned earlier, & have evolved a personal "coding" method for storing new information, that will allow me to recall it later, no matter
how much time has gone by.
I've rediscovered my old childhood ability to juggle algebraic quantities as needed, visually
for want of a better term, to arrive at the
correct answer without having to use formulas taught to me during attempts on the part of the public school system to drum that "nonsense" out of my
I've been able to better understand my negative reactions to situations & to some peoples' behavior, in order to change those reactions; I learned
that if you can truly understand something or someone, they're less likely to frighten or anger you.
In stages over the years, I've worked on taking responsibility for my own life, something I've seen described as "the most frightening thing you
can do". I'm not sure if that description is true, but it certainly comes close. In time, I've come to understand that the only
can make me act like a bonehead is myself. This deceptively simple statement covers much ground, & is perhaps the one facet of my understanding that,
for me, at least, most needs frequent renewal.
The 60's-70's were a time of intense interest in spiritual matters & various belief systems for many of us in the US; coupled with the drug use that
was common coin back then, the era produced a great number of what I like to call psychic voyagers. My own recreational pharmaceutical pastimes
dropped away years ago, which has in no way stifled my enjoyment of exploring "other spaces" made available to me via meditation.
After meditating for a while, & starting to become familiar with this new "space" inside myself, I would occasionally have visions, or the sensation
of being someplace else physically, or be able to track my dreams & follow sequential stories in them, of which I was previously unaware.
Although I'm now in my early 60's, people are usually surprised when I mention my age; I'm told, by most who are surprised, that they thought I'm
in my 40's. There was a news item recently about a study that concluded that meditating may slow physical aging. Again, I don't know if that's
true, but I've always felt that meditating kept me feeling
younger. Perhaps the mind/body connection kicks in after a while; one can always
As I said earlier, I started off simply, by trying to clear my mind of as much conscious thought as I could. From there, I followed whatever "felt
good", or whatever piqued my curiosity from my readings, from Jung to Castaneda, until I began to recognize an inner "path", very much my own, yet
sharing universal characteristics with the formalized meditative paths about which I read.
I own several Hemi-Sync (binaural beat) albums produced by the Monroe Institute, having become aware of them through my reading of Robert Monroe's
books years ago. I find that they can enhance my meditative state if I'm in the mood to listen, but often still prefer to just "go still" and see
To anyone interested in starting to meditate, I would advise keeping in mind that, among other things, this is a path to the deeper recesses of your
mind, & can be an invaluable tool toward a greater understanding of yourself. All of your insights won't be happy ones, & you will not like
everything you find out about yourself. If you're making a sincere try at it, however, you will find plenty of material to enable you to work on
your ability to stop bs'ing yourself, something we're all very good at doing.
If you feel you have any of what are loosely termed "extrasensory" abilities, meditation can better acquaint you with how you "do" them, & help
you to become better at working with them. I won't go into personal details here, but as is the case with the rest of my post, I speak from
If you're looking to start, you don't really need a guru, or a how-to book. Try focusing on your breathing as you relax as much as you can, or try
to gently make your mind stop as much mental "chatter" as you can. Once you start on the meditative path, you may find that you "just happen" to
come across people, books, movies, or documentary programs that will give you directions in which to go, or at least new paths to try, as well as
confirmation that others share that which you have discovered within yourself. I found a delightful increase in this type of synchronicity in my life
after I'd been at it for a while.
Where you want to take it from that point is, as they say, truly up to you.