reply to post by RicketyCricket
Hello RicketyCricket, may Peace be with you.
Meditation is to be consciously-aware and observant of reality and existence with clear perceptions. All of life is a meditation. Meditation will help
you to truly know yourself, and will open new insights and understandings.
In my opinion, the first practice is to clear the mind of thought.
Quieting the mind is a major obstacle of meditation. It will take some practice, but the rewards are well worth the effort. The ability to "not
think" will give your brain a rest, relieve stress, and re-energize you like a good nap.
Make some personal alone time, where you will not be bothered or distracted by people, pets, sounds, etc.
Sit or lay in a comfortable position. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Slow and steady breaths. Become aware of your breathing and focus
on it. Concentrate on breathing in, concentrate on breathing out. Slow, deep breaths. When you breath in, say to yourself that you are breathing in.
When you breath out, say to yourself that you are breathing out. (This is a good time to practice the Anapanasati Sutta. Will post it in next
As thoughts, memories, images, emotions, or songs appear in your mind, do not think about them, do not engage them, and do not dwell upon them. Do not
think about 'not-thinking' about the thought. Snap out of engaging the thought and focus on your breathing.
If you are having trouble clearing your mind of thoughts,... imagine you are at a rail-road crossing as a train crosses. Imagine each distracting
thought as an individual boxcar of the train. You see a boxcar come into view, you watch it pass. Be aware of it, do not fight it. Observe it, and
allow it to pass out of your awareness.
Or imagine you are sitting by a river. Imagine each distracting thought as a leaf drifting in the water. The leaf comes into view and is carried down
stream and out of sight by the current. Do not add to the thought, and do not think about 'not thinking.' Allow the thoughts to arise and pass,
acknowledged but not engaged.
Thoughts arise. Thoughts fade and pass.
As you gain control over distracting thoughts, continue to focus on your breathing. Do not have a conversation in your mind about breathing. Simply,
observe your breathing. Continue to allow thoughts to arise, then pass without ever adding to the thought.
As thoughts come less, and your internal voice stops chattering,... your mind begins to quiet. Enjoy the emptiness of a quiet mind. Find peace and
relaxation in a quiet mind. Stay in that quiet place as long as you can experience it, or as long as you desire.
You may even fall asleep while meditating at times, and that's ok. It will be a restful sleep! Just try again the next day, and the next day, until
you can quiet the mind without falling asleep.
In my personal opinion, further meditative techniques should not be tried until you are able and comfortable with focusing on your breathing and
clearing your mind of distractive thoughts. The ability to 'not think' will give your brain a rest, relieve stress, and re-energize you like a good
Meditation takes effort, practice, patience, dedication, trial and error. Give yourself 10-30 minutes of quiet alone time each day to meditate until
you start to get the hang of it. Do not become discouraged, just like sports, meditation takes practice.