Meditation. It always had a nice ring to it. People you know or friends of friends you’ve met who regularly practice some sort of meditation always sing its praises.
These conversations always drew out of me a vague but interested vibe. I’d think, “I want to experience that.” Or, “I bet that would really improve my health and lifestyle.”
But I also felt it was a chore. It was great during my Structural Integration training, with instructors leading the dive within, perfectly capturing the spiritual group dynamic.
Practicing on my own has not been so smooth. I’ve bought Deepak Chopra tracks and tried listening to them on my own in a quiet room. I’ve read books with a Buddhist spin that contend if I sit in a lotus position, promising that a lifetime of regimented practice of a foreign posture will bring me closer to Nirvana.
My process used to sound like this: “Inhale. Exhale. Concentrate on the space between each breath. Nah, too many thoughts swimming in my head. This isn’t working. I’ve got too much going on.”
I’ve spent a few good years trying to incorporate meditation into my lifestyle with ‘stop and go’ success. Success isn’t the right word actually. I’d more accurately characterize it as a half-assed New Year’s resolution – a meditation session here and there whenever I saw could fit into my schedule. There were no sentient, tangible benefits. I questioned if my sporadic method was nourishing me physically and spiritually.
Then I decide to learn more about transcendental meditation. The David Lynch Foundation continues to do an excellent job of interviewing celebrities on their TM practice and sharing their experiences with the world. Generally speaking, celebrities like Jerry Seinfeld, Paul McCartney, Russell Simmons, David Lynch, and other figures that I have an affinity towards have very stressful and hectic lives. It made me realize that if they can squeeze in two 20-minute TM sessions into their daily routines, then anyone can. Even more so, there must be something to it. I thought that it must really work and so it motivates them to practice every day.
Sparing you all the details of the course, my experience thus far has surpassed my expectations. I partook in 4 meetings at the David Lynch Foundation in midtown Manhattan that included people from all walks of life who all had a unique expectation of where their meditation practice will take them.
1) TM is absolutely complementary to everyone’s lifestyle no matter your particular situation. All you need is 20-25 minutes of meditation 2x a day.
2) You don’t need to be sitting on a mountaintop doing it, or trouble yourself with creating a shrine of some sort in your household. You just need a comfortable chair. We live in America – there are chairs almost everywhere.
3) The technique is effortless and very, very simple. I was amazed by how quickly I was able to feel the results, which energized me to keep practicing.
4) Although everyone’s experiences are unique, the health and wellness benefits are plenty. Here are some of benefits listed by the TM website:
– Develops the Total Brain
– Increases Intelligence
– Improves Creativity
– Reduces Stress and Anxiety
– Promotes Health and Longevity
– Enhances Relationships
– Promotes Peace
– Easy to Learn
– Enjoyable to Practice
– Scientifically Verified
To give you a taste of what I’ve felt is pretty special. I experienced everything on this list immediately after meditating and couldn’t wait till the next time came around to meditate again.
– Deep Sense of Calm and Peace
– Tingling Sensations of Forehead and Body
– Feelings of Joy
– More Alertness and Energy throughout My Day
– Deeper Rest
– Easier Communication and Presence with My Personal Relationships
What are your experiences with meditation? Do you have any other questions about my experience? I’d love to hear your thoughts…
Stay tuned for updates on my TM practice.