(This blog entry is part of an ongoing musical adventure!! Click here to be a part of it!)
What’s your relationship with that word? What just happened when you saw it? Did you immediately tap out of the conversation and go “that isn’t for me”? Or did you think of all the wonderful times you’ve experienced meditation?
My relationship with meditation has been on and off and is quite a story filled with resistance and surrender, which I feel are the basic essence of meditation.
For those of us that may not jump at the thought of sitting still for 20 minutes, I have learned that there are other ways to meditate. If you want the full benefits of meditation, then it is extremely recommended you do the whole sitting-down and stilling your mind thing. Here’s a few things I have done that have helped me enter into a state of mental surrender and inner peace:
- Painting. Art in general helps, and different artists would probably tell you different things they do that get you accessing higher parts of yourself without trying. I feel like pottery making would probably be extremely relaxing, being one with the clay, the humming of the machine, etc. I like sketching a lot, but there’s more though that goes into it. For me, the feeling of the paintbrush in my hand, the way the strokes feel, the way the paint runs on the paper. Just thinking of watching the paint puts me in a trance-like state. I imagine sewing could do this for a lot of people, as following the needle and having to continue a pattern allows for the mind to be hypnotized.
- Touching. While this perhaps may be one of the least ideal ones to do, as it involves someone else, I have to bring it up. I am very much a toucher, though, like my cats, it has to be on my terms. I thoroughly enjoy touching others as well, however, and do love to be in a setting where I am free to stroke or caress someone without there being the tension or insinuation of sexual touching. It’s what a friend of mine refers to as “good touch”. I have given people back rubs, and between me enjoying giving, and allowing my intuition to tell me where they most need to be touched, there comes a moment where all that exists is me and that person’s muscles, skin, tendons. Running fingers through hair, or tracing figures in freckles and beauty marks will usually also do this for me, though much less intense. This is another reason why I absolutely love having cats. Sometimes my cats and I get into a meditative state of petting, and you can tell by their purring and shameless belly exposing in my hand that they are in a state of total and absolute bliss.
- Jogging. Did I lose you yet? Hear me out. I’m not a jogger. I don’t exercise unless it’s doing things that don’t feel like exercise, such as swimming and dancing. Those things I love to do. However –and this has been verified by MANY a runner– jogging does the same thing for a LOT of people. It gets their mind to stop; the cycling of thoughts seizes, worries hit the pavement and stay there…I would love to be a jogger and strive to be one when I grow up. In the mean time, consider one of your physical activities to be your meditation process. Yoga, (of course!!!) is a must to consider in this.
- Music. Ah yes, finally, the point. Playing music, singing, and listening to music are all extremely powerful ways to connect with your higher self and inner peace. Usually listening to music that has no words is the most helpful, as they are less likely to trigger thoughts. That being said, doing any of the above with the right music can also enhance the experience.
So my two questions for you are the following:
1. What music allows you to give your mind a full rest? Or, what music do you listen to while meditating?
and 2: what other things do you do to help your mind come to a full rest?
All my love,