Does EVERY meditation have to go DEEP in order to be classed as a meditation?
Is there a point when you never have to paddle in the shallow end again?
How do you progress in meditation?
Advanced, experienced meditators find some days they are unable to get to the deeper states they have experienced many times. This notion, of meditation practice leading to deeper states and then you never have to go back to battling a busy mind, is a myth (until you reach Tranquil Abiding).
My course, “What Is Meditation?” informs you of the 4 brain-wave states people dive into during meditation – enrollment is FREE today
An expert in meditation is such, not because they never have a busy mind but because they have stopped struggling, have done their time in meditation, and never given up on the process. I tend to talk about meditation as a process because, as a process, you do not have to worry about the goal being achieved (this creates stress). Instead, your goal is to meditate (without expectations) and meditate some more – thereby giving your mind and body the chance to heal your stress – which leads to experiencing peaceful states (but not all the time).
I liken it to a game of snakes and ladders (see my future post on this), because although it may seem as if you are climbing the ladder of success with your meditation (for a little while) it is inevitable you shall land on a snake and feel like you are back to the beginning. Some days you are up then, for no apparent reason, your struggling to find the peace you expect. This is completely NORMAL.
On the days when your meditation sucks, it gives you a chance to practise patience, to be gentle with yourself and use mindful awareness while relaxing into the tension created by expectation.
My definition of meditation is: “A family of intentional activities that produce psychological changes“. The “family” is the 3 (or more) DNA strands that make up meditation. So, if you are intentionally using the 3 core DNA strands* of meditation – to try to relax, and focus on trying to observe your stresses and strains (expectations?) – then you are meditating, even though it doesn’t feel like it.
* The online course tells you all about those 3 DNA strands of meditation – enrollment is FREE today
Just a quick note to let you know I have created a course on meditation to help you develop your skill with ease.
Included is a FREE guided meditation audio. At the moment, for a limited time, the course is FREE too – ONLY via the button below.
It is a brief course to help you define what meditation is so you can get the most from it.
Once you complete the course, you will:
- find it easy to assess your meditation practice,
- know where to make a correction, and
- know what to emphasise to get what you want from your meditation.
Newbies get to grips with their meditation practice quicker when they know the 3 DNA strands of meditation
This course takes your understanding to a deeper level, quickly and easily. Suitable for beginners and more experienced meditators – and those who have tried meditation and found it didn’t work (until now).
Meditation course (FREE) login
Since meditation has many forms – from single-pointed-focus to visualisation to mantra – it follows there are also many ways to meditate. I think this definition of “doing nothing” is held by people who have never tried – and use it as an excuse to never try. My Meditation: Absolute Beginners Class takes people through many activities related to meditation and mindfulness. In fact, on the What Is Meditation course, I define meditation as:
A family of intentional activities that produce psychological changes.
I also go into what all that means, to give you a full understanding, but notice the definition states it is a number of intentional activities. You must actively participate in your meditation – or you could very well be “doing nothing“.
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Relaxation of the body and mind
This is typically a part of most meditations. It is OK to stop there – you have meditated. However, the relaxation part is usually the beginning of a meditation practice. When teaching, I give the students a simple relaxation meditation on the very first day. It gets people quickly and easily into meditation while giving them the first skill to practise.
Having said the FIRST practice is to relax, there are many practices within meditation to explore. You do NOT need to learn them all. If relaxation suits your needs right now then this may be as much as you need. Personally, I’d advise adding single-pointed-focus so you can gain deeper relaxation – stay tuned to find out why.
The quickest way to get beyond the myths is to join my easy but comprehensive courses. For instance, there is a course which takes you through the 3 DNA markers of meditation to further your understanding. If you already meditate, feel free to share it.
Oh, and the course is currently FREE
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The next post is on another myth of meditation – gosh, there are so many.
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There are many types of mediation, just as there are many reasons to meditate. Let me explain…
Have you heard of any of these?
- Mindfulness meditation – of which there are many variants, and my NEW book (out soon) will give you the best one.
- Concentration meditation – is single-pointed-focus and there are numerous things you can put your focus on.
- Meditating on the breath – can emphasise either mindful awareness or single-pointed-focus using the breath as your focal point.
- Visualisation meditation – uses your imagination to impact your body, mind and emotions. Visualisations abound on Youtube – some good, some OK, and some not.
- Movement meditation – utilises mindful awareness and focused attention – eg: Yoga and Tai Chi can be practised in this way.
The above are covered within my up-coming book (and courses) but there are others:
- Mantra – uses sound and rhythm (or focusing on the vibrations in the body) to get you into single-pointed-focus.
- TM (Transcendental Meditation) utilises a mantra.
There are lots of systems which use the common components of meditation in various ways to help people make changes – some of them become almost a religion for their devotees.
Well, with all these TYPES of meditation practice, it cannot possibly be one thing. I know most teachers say, “This is how you meditate” then show you their favourite way of engaging with meditation. I do the same, just with a footnote about other types – but it is evident there are many ways to meditate. Not to be confused with “Any way you think you could be meditating is meditation“. NO! I explain exactly what meditation is in my FREE course – where you discover the 3 DNA components of all meditation, without which it is NOT meditation.
I hope you enjoyed busting this myth.
The course below will further your understanding. If you already meditate, feel free to share it.
If you have any questions or comments feel free to join my list for updates because, apart from finding out when the next blog posts go up and my FREE online courses, you can also contact me by replying to my newsletter/emails.
Today’s course is about “The Three DNA Components Of ALL Meditation“, where I give you the inside scoop on the details many meditators do not know – yet if they did, this knowledge would help them gain more from their meditation practice. If you haven’t started meditating yet, this will put you ahead of the game, quickly and easily.
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Today, I’ll give you the first two, of a half-dozen fundamental myths many people believe, especially those who say they cannot meditate. When I recently did a workshop on this, I promised participants I’d give them a tenner if they could honestly say they cannot meditate by the end of the 45 minutes. I didn’t have to pay out because once ALL the myths are busted (more coming soon), and under proper guidance, everyone is able to meditate.
Meditation Is To Stop Or Empty The Mind
Many people think the purpose of meditation is to either empty the mind or stop one’s incessant thinking. Both of these are incorrect.
OK, if emptying the mind or controlling one’s thoughts is NOT the purpose of meditation, what is?
There are many things you can use meditation to help with, so to say it is ONE thing is incorrect. To take control of the mind, or stop it completely at will, takes a huge amount of meditation time – of which 6 months will be in silent retreat – so this is NOT a viable purpose to begin your journey. You CAN gain calmness, peace and feelings of contentedness fairly quickly although possibly not within the first few times you practise. It depends on where you’re at when you begin.
I Cannot Meditate Cos My Mind Is Too Busy
Many people believe, due to having an abundance of thoughts that seem to never shut up, there is no way meditation will achieve – for them – the calmness that is reported. They may have tried – unsuccessfully – to subdue their thoughts with a meditation; proving they are unable to meditate.
If you have a busy mind, you will have to do a meditation designed to calm the mind (not all meditations are designed to do this – see my next blog-post). It is best to do this under competent guidance because although the instructions seem easy there are many nuances to navigate. A body relaxation then single-pointed-focus on the breath can calm your mind and get you into that deeply peaceful space… BUT, to expect your mind to become still is going to create a tension you do not need or want. This is where the nuances start: expecting or trying to stop your mind will add an additional stress therefore make it worse!
A busy mind can be a symptom of stress. I have a non-meditation process I use with clients to help them get beyond their ‘Busy Mind’ so they can quickly take advantage of meditation – without the harmful struggle. I’ll give this to you as soon as I have fully written the instructions so you can use it to Melt-Stress within minutes (watch out for the blog-post coming soon).
When you take away the emphasis on calming and stopping your thoughts, meditation becomes easier to do. It is a practice you can develop; so you end up with experiencing peace and calm without trying to make it happen. A better target is to work on sitting down to meditate, then focusing your attention (but not too rigidly), and exploring your experience… I’ll get into all that on future posts (and on my course).
I hope you enjoyed finding out about this myth. I have a slideshow which takes you through the 3 DNA components of meditation to further your understanding. Find it in the FREE course (link below). If you already meditate, feel free to share it. The next post is on another myth of meditation… By the way, one of the myths is about meditation postures, as illustrated by both images on this page :-)
If you have any questions or comments feel free to join my list for updates because, apart from finding out when the next blog posts go up, you can also contact me by replying to my newsletter/emails.
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