Photo Friday: The Magic Of Meditation.

27 Jan

Meditation is the discovery that the point of life is always arrived at in the immediate moment.-Alan Watts

Since I’ve now become a regular of a restorative yoga class at Asheville Community Yoga, I’ve discovered the magic of meditation. When I was first introduced to it, it was hard. My thoughts were going crazy: grocery lists, daily activities, people I needed to call, the planning of meals, homework, etc. I just wanted to shut off my mind, and I couldn’t seem to do it. When I was at my second restorative yoga class, Robin (the teacher) told us to concentrate on our breathing. Not just breathing in and out. But the feeling of our chest expanding when air rushed in, the feeling of the air entering our lungs. The physical concept of being filled not with just air, but with life. That concept got me thinking:

How would things change if I focused on the fact that every breath was pouring new life inside me, making me feel completely present and alive? That concept plus the concept of “All we can be sure of is the present moment” changed my outlook on life. Things began to look like possibilities instead of obstacles. And the choices I made every day began to have more weight. Focusing on the fact that all we have is now is a very powerful tool. It’s helped me not to worry as much about things. And especially when I’m in restorative yoga class, I know that for one hour the only thing I have to focus on is being completely present. It’s an amazing feeling. Almost magical. All the stress, tension, fear, anxiety…it just falls away, and the only thing that’s left is me, my body, my life. But once I walk out of class, I’m slapped with reality. Schoolwork, errands, class. And slowly, being present slips away. But then, the next Friday, I get it back. Even if only for an hour. I get it back. And then I’m refilled with being present and only being sure of things moment by moment.

In my restorative yoga class, we practice mindfulness meditation. According to historyofmeditation.net,

Mindfulness is a tool used in Vipassana meditation or insight meditation and comes from the Theravada School of Buddhism. It consists of being completely in the now or present moment and being supremely aware or mindful the mental and physical happenings taking place within your person. These include movements of the body, sights, sounds, smells, tastes, sensations of touch, feelings of pleasure and pain thoughts etc. The practice of mindfulness is being aware of the previously mentioned happenings with complete non judgement or reaction (attraction or repulsion). This practice then leads to purifying the mind of unwholesome traits and ultimately the experience of “Nibbana” sometimes spelt as “nirvana” which is a permanent and supreme state of happiness.

Concentrating on the present moment allows us to let go of all worry, stress, and fear….and simply live. Live freely, openly, completely, and sometimes…full of magic.

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13 Responses to “Photo Friday: The Magic Of Meditation.”

  1. Anita S January 27, 2012 at 8:44 am #

    Thank you for this post; it has inspired me to commit myself more fully to regular meditation. Mindfulness is a skill I have learned in therapy and it really helps me maintain my equilibrium, but I don’t always use it. I need periodic reminders!

  2. bajamerson January 27, 2012 at 10:54 am #

    Another reminder that I need to meditate more! I ran across this article via Dr. Oz last month about how good meditation is for the brain: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/238093.php

  3. meditationsfromthehive January 27, 2012 at 11:22 am #

    Thank you for this reminder.

  4. Diane P. January 27, 2012 at 11:35 am #

    Completely agree! “all we can be sure of is the present moment” – simply true and beautiful! 🙂

  5. awarewriter January 27, 2012 at 11:55 am #

    Nice photo that captures the meditation moment. You can practice mindfulness in your daily life. When washing the dishes, wash the dishes without concern for finishing or what might come next.

    John

  6. Gina Marie Cannistraro January 27, 2012 at 10:05 pm #

    Nice post, thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences as a newcomer to meditation. Before I tried it myself, I was skeptical. I didn’t understand how something so simple could be so enjoyable. But then I discovered for myself how amazing it can be.

  7. jilllurie January 28, 2012 at 12:48 am #

    I LOVE THIS!!

  8. ihavetheperfectlife January 28, 2012 at 8:39 am #

    LOVE this post! … and all your writing… I’m sharing you with my followers and I’ve honored you with the Versatile Blogger Award! Learn more here: http://ihavetheperfectlife.com/2012/01/26/the-versatile-blogger-award/
    XOXO,
    Ann

  9. coloradojess January 28, 2012 at 4:44 pm #

    I agree with the importance of being present! Your post reminded me of this quote I ran across:

    “Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”

    -Buddha

    I feel like the principle here is that dwelling on the past and dreaming of the future are very unproductive states of mind. Neither brooding or dreaming produces anything tangible in the present without action. Now is all we can hope for to produce a beautiful history and a hopeful future.

  10. Paint Your Landscape January 28, 2012 at 8:49 pm #

    You are a gifted writer. I am enjoying your blog very much.

  11. The Growth Guy January 29, 2012 at 7:09 am #

    I have meditated for several years, and I relate to what you say about going back into life, and that kind of jarring feeling of being taken out of the present moment. But over the years I have felt the peace in the moment coming out into the other moments. Sometimes I am aware of the silence under all the noise, and it is reassuring to have it there, even when there is a lot going on.

  12. lightbox3d January 29, 2012 at 7:45 am #

    Great post. I really wish I knew the essentials of meditation.

  13. Naomi Wittlin January 30, 2012 at 10:46 am #

    I especially love this post because I’ve been focusing on mindfulness too, trying to remember to concentrate on the sensory aspects of each moment.
    I’m so happy to find some new mindfulness quotations too!

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