Thursday, June 25, 2009

How do we meditate ?

INTRO: In one the Question and Answer Session with Ajahn Brahm, I asked this question : How do we meditate ?
The reply that came back : You can meditate anyway you want.
In other words, he wanted us to realise it from within that : in each and every step that we do, we must be in a "meditative mode" be it walking, lying down, eating, sitting, working, twittering or even blogging.
Every single minute or seconds, we should be meditating that is be "mindful". Being mindful means putting your "mind" on the action that you are doing.
The whole process is to still your mind and only when your mind is very very still - things start to happen ! And only through meditation, can one learn to "let go" and be "peaceful". Then when one is truly peaceful, one sees "emptyness", there is "nothing" there.

From my personal experiences, 15 years already, this is what I would like to share on meditation :

1) Find a quiet place to sit on the floor to meditate -

2) Cross your leg right leg over left leg is the best but there is no hard and fast rule -

3) Your hands should be right over the left hand with the thumbs touching and gently place both hands to touch your legs -

4) Now close your eyes -

5) Start to bring your mind to focus on the breath and count -

6) Breath in and then breath out count as 1. Breath in again and out and count as 2 till you can count from 1 to 100 without the "mind wandering". This is called "Training the mind to be still", first part.

7) Once you can do that, I will begin to share with you on how to do the next step.

FSQ NOTE: Each time when you meditate usually when you focus on the breath and count to 3, this time the mind usually wanders. it is very natural but try not to worry and gently bring in the mind again to focus on the breath and try to perfect this every time, you sit and meditate.
There are other ways of meditating like walking, left, right, left right. Practise that with your mind on the legs like a "walking meditation".
Other ways include "eating meditation" : like when you place a piece of tofu in your mouth and gently taste it with your mind and then slowly swallowing it down.
You may take months to be perfect till you can count from 1 to 100, while some people take years. Once you can count till 100, you are actually on stage 3 of the meditation process according to Ajahn Brahm.
You may wish to buy his book, "Happiness through Meditation" about S$25/- from Buddhist Fellowship or get it free when you sign as a 2 year BF membership and then read the details there or visit their website.
GOOD LUCK to your meditation !!!

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