Meditation techniques are important!
In some ways, meditation is just like a sport, like tennis or basketball. Just as there are techniques that make you better at playing tennis, or exercises you can do to help you jump higher, there are meditation techniques that can assist you in stilling your mind.
Meditation is something you can engage in—it’s dynamic! It doesn’t have to be a static exercise. And you won’t always use the same technique.
And it’s not like you just sit and empty your mind, which is something I’ve read on forums and websites across the Internet—people somehow think that when you meditate, you’re emptying your mind, and I want you to know that is NOT my experience of meditation (and I’ve been meditating for 20 years).
Many of these techniques for meditation are not mentioned in the bible, just like you won’t find exercises to help you with your jump shot, or how to hit that perfect backhand. But that doesn’t stop you from going to a trainer who can teach you those things, right? So why would you let that stop you from learning something about meditation?
What Mother Teresa has to say about this…
Understanding how to sit in silence in a priceless gift and one you must learn by doing.
Mother Teresa talks about the importance of silence and sitting in prayerful silence is certainly something that you can engage in. She says:
God is the friend of silence. See how nature – trees, flowers, grass- grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence… We need silence to be able to touch souls.Mother Teresa
But when you go to sit in silence, how do you deal with a mind that just won’t stop chattering?
Or a mind that won’t stop thinking about the past…?
Or a mind that won’t stop obsessing about all the things you need to do for the rest of your day.
There’s a meditation technique for that…
Those are the kinds of struggles you’re going to run up against when you start to meditate and you start to sit in silence.
The practice of meditation is not hard—it’s actually the simplest thing. In fact, I could teach you how to meditate in just a minute. I did it the other day while I was in line getting coffee…
The girl serving the coffee told me she wanted to learn how to meditate. In under a minute, I shared the most basic form of meditation to help her begin her practice, right then and there. And she was like, “Ralph, you blew my mind! I never knew it was that simple.”
The hard part about meditation is how to stick with it.
For example, what are you going to do when you sit down and you’re confronted with an emotion or thought that just won’t leave you alone…?
So, you’re going to sit for meditation and you’re going to sit down and close your eyes and you might start focusing on your breath or you might focus on a particular Bible verse or a quote from one of your spiritual teachers that you personally relate to, like the quote I shared from mother Teresa.
When you do, be prepared, because you’re going to be hit with something it’s going to be either thoughts or emotions—any number of things like anxiety, an feeling of unworthiness, a lack of patience, and inability to focus, or even a feeling of fear.
And keep in mind, those things can arise at any point during your meditation, today, tomorrow, or even 5 years from now.
Like I said before, I’ve practiced meditation for twenty years and the one thing I’ll tell you from my experience is that these experiences come and go. So one week I may be really struggling with something that someone said to me that day and then I’m able to resolve that pretty quickly because of my practice so I let that go but then maybe as I go to meditate, something from the past comes up and I start thinking about someone who’s wronged me. Then I might work with some sort of technique on forgiveness and I might actually go through a process in utilizing various techniques to help me let go of hurt feelings or anger that I’m experiencing because of the way somebody treated me.
Or if I go to sit for meditation and I’m thinking about the future right then I might actually need some specific techniques to help me let go of those obsessive thoughts about what I need to do during my day.
Meditation Techniques Change Over Time
Meditation techniques play different roles at different times in your life and that’s why having a wide variety of techniques to pull from in your practice of meditation is very helpful
You’ll find that certain meditation techniques work very well for you at certain points in your life and then as those issues resolved and you’re able to work through certain things then you might find yourself gravitating towards different techniques to help you resolve other issues and other things that come up in your meditation.
That’s the importance of meditation techniques — each one of those techniques is an opportunity and a pathway to:
- Understand your mind
- Control your thoughts
- Work with and process emotions
- Let go of self-delusions
- Release unrealistic expectations you have for yourself and others
There’s probably a few more I could add there. If you’ve got one, leave it in a comment below!
Understanding the nature of your mind
It’s important to understand the nature of your mind and how your mind works. If you don’t understand that, then how can you control your mind as you’re moving through your day?
If you can’t control your mind in meditation, how can you expect to go out into your daily life and control your thoughts and emotions and all of these things that can get in the way of us experiencing and expressing Christ’s love in our life?
However, if I work with these things and I work with these techniques in a seated meditation practice at the beginning of my day then I could try to carry that into my day I can try to relax and calm myself when someone says something to me that upsets me or someone cuts me off in traffic
That’s a great one, right?
Getting cut off in traffic happens to almost everyone. You’ve probably had that experience. How do you deal with them?
The way I deal with those things in my daily life is to learn how to deal with difficult thoughts and emotions in my seated meditation practice and then I carry that practice into my day
Eventually, what happens is you gain tools and the ability to walk through your day in a more calm, centered, regulated way.
Life changes…so will your meditation
The meditation techniques that work for you today may not be the ones that are necessarily the best for you tomorrow or three weeks from now or 10 years from now right and that’s the importance to understand that sometimes techniques work and they work for a time
And then we let them go and we use other approaches and other methodologies to work with our meditations so if you have a particular struggle that you’re going through in your meditation practice or in your life right you start to notice as you meditate I found particularly you’ll start to notice that you will become aware of the things that you have issues with right these issues that kind of come up for you like oh I’m noticing now I’m really sensitive when people say something about my work or you know I really become very shy when it’s you know when there’s like more than 10 people in a room but one-on-one I’m really good and I can I can talk to people right you become aware of all these little nuances of your personality and things that you can choose to work with and to overcome if overcoming shyness is something that you want to do then there’s meditation practice that you could do to help you with that and to overcome those individual issues that you might be struggling with so
Let me know in the comments what you’re struggling with in your life or meditation, and if you want to keep it private message me through Facebook messenger.
Creating a meditation practice
I’m be happy to help you to create a practice that maybe will help you to move through those things.
I’m a big proponent of meditation but I also practice yoga and I do lots of different types of body work, so I’m involved with the healing community.
I think that all of those things can be really great methods to help you work through different issues that you’re facing in your life
The most important message for me to share with you is that this doesn’t have to be something that you struggle with on your own.
You don’t have to do this on your own.Ralph Miller
I want to help support you in your practice both your seated practice but also how you’re carrying it into your day that’s a big part of my message through Christ Lives in You.
It’s about how you’re living your daily life and how we can in each and every day express ourselves as as clearly and as beautifully as we can so that in every thought word and action we are embodying and becoming just living the message of Christ inside of us
Christ fully formed in us!
Paul says I want you to be fully formed in Christ and in order to do that I believe truly we have to practice this.
It’s very difficult to live your life each and every day and just expect everything to be perfect and just expect yourself to be able to respond in a loving and kind way that’s indicative of the nature of Christ within us, Christ in us.
To express that fully we need support and we need to support each other and we need to be able to talk with each other about the kinds of struggles that we’re having in both our seated practice our prayerful meditation and also in or day.
Leave a Comment
Be sure to comment below and if there’s something else you’d like me to talk about particularly in regard to your practice of meditation or yoga, let me know and I’ll be happy to share my thoughts on Facebook Live.