The Benefits of Meditation
We had a great comment from kendall man who's actually a photographer and a gourmand and they're saying indeed I often imagine my mind as a spaghetti full of source where everything is mingled and I perceive meditation is turning this mind more into a lasagna with eyes practice fied layer after layer I like that imagery very much beautiful and I can relate to pastor yeah me too thank you for that comment was that who's kendo man kendo man yes in canada as a photographer in a calm and he might also be a swordsman no painting tendo family is saying I learned to say thank you when my mind wanders before it comes back to my breath because it's a way of not feeling bad about going away beautiful we do have a question from simba wants to know how many minutes of meditation or ordinary awareness is suggested for a person every day. Yeah, well, that's a great question and I think maybe at the end of the session all sort of recommend how as a piece of our bigger pie here how this one could be i...
ntegrated. But in general, you know, these days for people living in this world, we don't have a lot of time uh so somebody having a practice it's like twenty or thirty minutes a day for four, five times a week is profound shift of everything on dh that's a lot of students I work with us you know just that kind of commitment um fifteen, twenty minutes a day for five times a week um you know it can be done in very short burst too simple is that could be done a very short person I think in our the rest of our workshop we're going to do like to five minutes at a time and just see how that shifts the energy in the room for us you know uh so um but in general you need to have some kind of relationship to this practice I would say um you know, around twenty minutes of thirty minutes a day four, five times a week is a great great starting point anonymous hermit says their biggest not anonymous anymore. My biggest obstacle during meditation is feeling fidgety I always wanna wiggle my toes or fidget how can I overcome this anonymous hermit get out of here really isn't and I'm not on this hermit he should be teaching this course um fidgeting is anonymous hermit where does it start? That's why don't I ask you? Because starting the body there is a start in the mind and usually it's just a kind of restlessness that's habitual because we're slowing everything down so the idea is just if you can just to feel and see that energy without giving in to it this your discipline this is a discipline so as much as you can just sort of relate to the energy of that fidgety nous without manifesting it physically that's okay, so you know that's a lot of people uh it's kind of a question of inertia it's what I call the road runner principle you know, we're zooming around like this and then when we meditate it's like, you know, like you ran right off the cliff um, you know, I saw a guy in new york once get hit by a car and he just couldn't believe it it happened, so it was stunning to see it, you know, he was on his way to someplace that's what we all are we're on our way someplace and then we get hit by the car and he got up as if no, no, no, you don't understand I was on my way to this place and he'd just been hit by a car moving pretty fast and then he just took about two steps like that and then just collapsed, but that kind of inertia that we have that mo mentum that speed, that energy, this is cutting right into it, so of course when we sit down, we experience all that speed and energy more, more and more exaggerated way and the discipline is to abide just try to stay with him if you can. Okay. Good luck with that. I'd like to go toe on now, actually, one of austin's because and I had a conversation during the break. And perhaps you'd like to share with the online audience and, david, your thoughts about how you approach meditation because it resonated with me. Might my my dental mental hygiene tips for the day. So I had difficulty integrating the discipline of daily meditation. Uh, so I, um I was brushing my teeth with my electronic toothbrush, which runs for two minutes. And the thought struck me that if I could brush my teeth for two minutes at least twice a day, then I could start a discipline of meditating for two minutes. And so I started meditating. I started meditating. I thought I could commit to two minutes. So, you know, they really lame if you can't commit to two minutes. So I would just put a gentle timer on my iphone and I meditated for two minutes for entire week. And then I opted to three and up to two, four. And now I meditate for twenty minutes every day. But I made this connection that it was justus important to brush my teeth as it was to brush my mind and see how that works for me so if it works for you take take it and just commit to two minutes well that's that's how you came up with your your offering of mental floss, right? Yes new new website mental floss dot com I like that business idea there so um you know that reminded me and of the o henry story where he wants to get strong so he lived so he gets a baby rhinoceros and he lifts it every day and what? So every day is a little heavy and gets a load of course it had a beautiful, poignant ending at the end to somehow it got to sort of critical weight and they find him dead with a rhinoceros on top of him so I don't know that I hope that's not the outcome of this story but you know the idea of gradually build strength and capacity um this requires a lot of kindness to oneself uh it's so interesting and we're going to talk about this in the creative area. Gentleness is so important in this kind of practice and it's interesting that people who could do a million things you know well some of them have a very hard time sitting still even for the two minutes so that's saying something about our ability to be with ourselves that's powerful that way we could pay attention to that we're good people we can be with ourselves we don't have to panic so that's really what this tradition is bringing to the party there um let's see what else we got here is actually an experience from oleg have asked if they're an experienced meditator or not but he said I experienced my mind as having an abstract irritation where it subsided when I put awareness into it much like a bunch of waves at sea getting quiet wow that's beautiful that's like you know tell you the truth it that you know is a meditation teacher we look for those kind of expressions where you can communicate that but the underlying agitation is an interesting one um and what exactly that is you know that we're willing to experience our ground hum you know normally wear this sort of level of what's being broadcast but the ground like listen to the sound this room has a hum what is that for us? And you know when you touch it on that sometimes there was this call is being slightly distressed or something like that not quite comfortable um it's called duca in sanskrit is just a defense sense of being slightly ladies underlying it and what we're encouraging is not ignoring that and and not just to see where that comes from um because if there's a peaceful ground home everything we do is going to emanate from that, you know, if we've sort of gone down to that you said primordial then you go down that primordial level that kind of fundamental level everything on top of that it's uh it's actually easy from that from that point of view so um next slide, huh again in the in the e book that we have um there's a lot more detail so if you do sign up actually download the course you get that a lot more flesh on this, you know, a lot more depth, but this one is, um the benefits of meditation if we actually practice. So this is one where I had my favorite I teach sometimes at a place called kripalu, which is a large, holistic learning center in the east and my favorite things I go there and I ask people, you know, what's your experience with meditation. They say my favorite one was a woman got said I've had a regular practice for twenty years, twice a year, every year for twenty years, so somehow there's no magic here, this is like practicing anything, you know, anything that you think of it that you're cultivating like the story and told the building building gradually um but if we don't do the practice, we will not receive the benefits of it that's just something we have to be like a little more you know what's interesting is I just started teaching quite a quite a few people want to one as I mentioned and what's interesting is sometimes the student comes and says, you know this I don't really think this works and also the other people are kind of driving me crazy and it's kind of like you look at them and you know those are always the people are not practicing you say well how's your practice and they go well, I've been you know, off of it for about a year and you can't well you know and then it's interesting the people who are doing the practice they're the ones who are sort of marinating successfully in terms of some kind of evolution of their situation progression so there's no way around this all the great teachers have said this over and over again um if we don't practice we will not route the benefits so that's just there is no magic in our tradition there's nobody who could do it for you there's nobody could give it to you um famous last words from the buddha would figured out for yourself you know waken get tips we can get guidance we can get feedback but we have to do the work ourselves so from panyu years young from who panniers song I think it is our apologies if I haven't got that right there asking how do I know when I have achieved mindful meditation is there such a thing ask him who wants to know I think it's a shame you should ask her who wants to know I mean the interesting point there is um and of course there's a lot said about this but the focus on the goal uh sometimes like when will this be a great company creative life we achieved that yet it's a process it's ongoing right it's organic it's alive it's creative so are we so sort of sometimes it's good to do what we call relaxing your agenda a little bit and just go along with the practice of course there are milestones I think you could say relatively if somebody is practicing mindfulness they should be coming more mindful of a certain point otherwise something's not happening right? You know if you're practicing loving kindness you should become more kind in a certain point right um if you're practicing guitar you should be able to play at a certain point you know it's it's a question of getting the right teaching I think in this case for this with this well uh may be working with the teacher would be really good ideas so you get some feedback going on um and see how your practice is evolving progressing let's have another short period of sitting because this is really the session for those of you who just tuned in we're doing a much bigger arc of topic which is creativity, spirituality and making a buck frankly this time around we're going to be talking a lot about creativity and making a buck but this is our little hidden jewel in here which is the mind training from the meditative tradition but if you stay with us we're going to be sort of looking at the practical dimensions of what that brings out in our lives so again I'm going to give you this since this is our segment to do it so if you could take your seat again everybody out there we'll have another short period of practice and sometimes it's good when you take yours you just sort of touching with yourself how are you how do you feel you know kind of allow yourself to settle into being you in this present moment and the posture is a nice upright posture with the eyes open with a soft downward gays are sense perception sorrow open but not so active so the eyes of a soft focus whatever sense perceptions arise during the session are okay we just let them come and go then after we take our posture the second step is beginning to place our attention on the feeling of breathing just the feeling of it what does it feel like to breathe in now you can put your attention at the tip of the nose hear the breath going in and out there you can feel the stomach rising and falling with the breath, or you can feel the full cycle of breath going through the body. So that's your exercises to place your attention on the breath and let it rest there see what that feels like if you find yourself drifting away and you notice home couldn't I've been thinking about what I wanted to have a lunch here? My kids are coming home from school and half a now our, uh, you know, I have to prepare for this upcoming meeting, whatever thoughts arise, and even if they're very emotionally charged thoughts when you notice that you lost in them just label thinking, don't repress it don't try to reject it, but just let it go come back to the feeling being with the breath so again, you may notice your mind drifting. It doesn't matter what you're thinking about happy thoughts, sad thought, anxious got oppressive thought when you notice it just sort of see that as it is thinking, bring your awareness back to breath, we focus on the breath you need to shift your posture you can again after practice and that is good just a stretch a little bit gradually you khun sit very loose are tightening up, but sometimes you might want to do a little twist to ride in a twisted left back bend over his shoulders and then we're just gonna go in regular life just get up and go about your business this point right into it okay, so um I wanted to just do a little demo of what this might look like especially for you folks at home we've never tried this I think most of you have meditated before here, right? Have you done a little meditation practice before you have I know you two do return have you too, you know and obviously ended kelly, you've been have you been practicing some lessons have been okay, okay? And you have a regular practice so at home it might look something like this if you're just getting underway and frankly, it might look like something like this twenty years later so I'm gonna be the meditator taking my seat right comfortable crossed like a position is resting my hands and my knees but firmly planted on the floor um on the cushion nice grounded feeling to the whole thing elongated spine sense perceptions relax and open strong back over in front oft front paying attention to the breath going in and out oh really is this all there is to it this is meditation this is stupid this is a waste of my time I don't really why I paid for this course you know um you know I think there's a movie opening up that I really want to see it three d down there down the street there the multiplex you have gravity that one I want to see that I want to go floating around space it's a lot more interesting than this is um but what the hell I'm assault oh oh I'm actually meditating right now thinking come back about so we're gonna wander off this's really when you experience meditator knows you're gonna wander off you're gonna spend most of your time in the weeds of the mind that's a big relief for everybody because you think he supposed to do this perfectly and have a clear mind ok so then your back coughing oh geez I don't know it's too cold in here one who's who's in charge of the temperature in here it's that thing I'm with a group again I can't just in my own home I can set the thermostat exactly where I like to have it you know and I heard that woman next to me she's coughing and sneezing I'm gonna get sick I know I'm gonna get sick this is this is not a healthy situation for me to be and this is like I'm feeling a little claustrophobic you know okay you notice that thinking you'd come back to the breath then there is this famous one oh yes I feel really good really good really good ah, this is like feel very relaxed, peaceful, very open I think I'm going to do a lot of this kind of meditation practice I get it I'm gonna do this and maybe do a retreat you know, coming up and I heard about this place in the summer I could go to do my passion ery treat you know? And, uh yeah, I think I'm gonna do a lot of even those kind of thoughts thinking back the breath so there's no thoughts that are eh, immune everything we just come back, come back, come back, come back, they're coming back is the deal. So the last thing I'm going to say before we break on goto our wonderful hosts for closing thoughts is, uh, this comment of discovering basic goodness, which is a term that we use in the shambala tradition quite a bit. If you think about uncovering basic goodness in every imaginable situation, it will change your view of life and your world. We can actually afford to trust ourselves and not be afraid of who we are. We could actually afford to trust ourselves and not be afraid of who we are, and the meditation is sort of our gesture than direction of connecting with our own goodness and our own sense of not being afraid of ourselves and not being afraid of who we are