The 2019 Meditation Makeover
"Let's go inner peace... I haven't got all day!" Hey, do you want to meditate? The standard excuses that I hear when asked this question are; 'I'm sorry, I can't focus.', 'Uh, I am not a Hindu!', 'I don't have the time!!', 'Isn't meditation a spiritual experience? It's not my thing.', 'Hey, it's finally raining! Sorry, can't do meditation right now.' BIZARRE right? That's exactly how I feel when I hear the misconceptions people have held for eternities towards the practice of meditation!
Meditation is an age-old practise dating back to the era of the Vedas, possibly 5,000 to 3,500 BCE or even earlier! The Indian origin technique has been passed down through generations, which makes it a victim to a great deal of filtering and dilution as to the original idea of technique.
These might be the common meditation myths you might come across; meditation can only be done by the sages and holy men, meditation is religious, meditation is difficult, meditation is not for the overthinker, you can only meditate with your eyes closed, you have to chant mantras while meditating, doing meditation requires years of practice and experience, you are not supposed to have thoughts while you meditate, unfortunately this list goes on!
Meditation is contradictory to the common beliefs and myths that surround it. It is an activity that helps you acknowledge your thoughts; helps you invoke awareness and helps you centre yourself. However, complicated it may sound, it is ironically a very simple yet effective technique that offers innumerable benefits!
Then why do we avoid taking advantage of this ancient tried and tested technique?
“Don't get too close
It's dark inside
It's where my demons hide
It's where my demons hide"
These are the lyrics from a song called 'Demons' by Imagine Dragons. You may ask what's the connection of these lyrics to meditation? Well, here's the answer.
Subconsciously people suffer from "Sedatephobia" which is ’Fear of Silence'. They're afraid to confront their unedited thoughts in the presence of silence.
When everything is silent, you're bound to concentrate on your raw thoughts. It may not always be the prettiest picture when faced with one's unfiltered thoughts. The 'demons' which are these thoughts stop people from experiencing the beauty of meditation.
There have been studies of people in Anechoic chambers have had displacing experiences when faced with ZERO sound. An anechoic chamber is a room that is designed to completely zero down the sound by absorbing the reflections sounds and/or the electromagnetic waves.
The effects of being in one of these chambers have been gruesome, so much so, that the longest time anyone has spent in one of these chambers is less than 60 minutes!
It's no secret that COMPLETE silence can often be scary, and this is what often pushes people off of the technique of meditation.
Here's where the MAKEOVER meditation steps in. It recognizes that meditation is not to be practiced only in SILENCE. The digital era has opened up new avenues for meditation, with guided meditations, group meditations, meditation music and so on! Using different sounds that have a healing and therapeutic effect on the practitioner, helping them adapt to the practice of meditation.
Yoga is everything and everything is yoga. Meditation is one of the biggest mental components of yoga. But what is important to remember is, in spite of meditation being a structured technique, it is not mandatory that everyone goes down a similar course in adapting this technique. Yoga, as I have always said is the lifestyle that seamlessly molds and blends in the daily routine, meditation is the same!
You decide what meditation is for you.
The definition of meditation is; It is a technique that allows the practitioner to focus their mind on a particular object, thought or activity, it enables them to attain awareness and achieve mental clarity and emotional stability by calming the mind.
Meditation has never been limited to a silent room, closed eyes or quiet/thoughtless mind; it is a personal experience that allows one to choose their own path.
Modern meditation can be anything from engaging in an artistic activity to listening to soothing music. Anything and everything that causes you mental peace and clarity is meditation.
Think of meditation as the personal me-time, that one needs to withdraw from their otherwise busy schedule, in order to reconnect with themselves.
Technology has played a major role in the makeover of meditation. From mindful meditation apps to guided meditation techniques everything is available at a click of the consumer. It has presented the consumer with endless pathways and variations. It presents the consumer with the opportunities to experience gratitude, mindfulness, and positivity through this technique. Meditation before sleeping, meditation for focus, meditation to start your day, meditation to feel happy, meditation for positive energy, meditation to release negativity the diversity is limitless! The best part about this is that it allows the consumer to choose the time, place and the state in which they would like to meditate!
This accessibility, modernity and the authenticity of the tools and techniques is where the beauty of meditation lies.
What's your excuse to avoid meditation now?
Don't overthink, just meditate!
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