As they sit down
to meditate, many people carry on their shoulders a heavy
expectation that is bound to crush their motivation quickly.
In their mind, meditation is supposed to turn off all thoughts
and bring bliss.
We all know too well the scenario that plays out instead:
as we wiggle to and fro from the discomforts of our yogic
sitting posture, all sorts of mundane thoughts dash through
our mind and prevent us from connecting with the "divine".
Exasperated with our inadequacy, we quit.
But perhaps it is time to challenge the assumption that
meditation is about silencing the mind.
When people shut out all thoughts and emotions as they meditate,
they usually do so in the belief that these aspects of themselves
are obstacles on their path toward a divine, no matter what
face it carries.
Yet as our philosophy changes, so does our approach to meditation.
If you see "the divine" in yourself as much as
you see it in the outside world and beyond, then you recognize
anything coming from your inner self as a divine message.
Unfortunately, daily pressure, stress, and distraction have
gagged that inner voice. Meditation is an opportunity to
help it speak clearly again and to realize your own unique
expression of life.
This being said, you still do not wish to get caught up
in the arbitrary firings of your mind as they happen especially
during the early stages of your meditation practice. Man
being a lazy creature of habit, we are not eager to confront
our true selves and grow. Thus, our overzealous ally, the
subconscious will do anything to break us away from our
process of self-improvement.
The key is not to suppress your thoughts and emotions, but
rather to notice them and allow them to move on. Learn to
distinguish whether a thought is worthwhile or not. If it
is, be open to whatever else your inner self has to tell
you in the matter. In other words: listen to your intuition
again. It is the embassador of life within yourself.
As you are meditating to hear your unique voice once more
rather than erase all trace of your personality, you are
in fact undertaking the most difficult, and also the most
rewarding journey a person can ever embark on. Life is an
expedition to uncover ourselves. No one else can teach you
the lessons you need to learn about yourself. No one can
tell you who you are better than you yourself can.
Meditation, therefore, should not be considered as a time
when we do yet more violence to our inner voice. Meditation
instead is an opportunity to visit with our selves and learn
more about who we are.