I don’t have any. But if you do, i would appreciate them since I have seen tons of people asking about meditation i figured this discussion needed starting. I have read up on it a bit and found some pretty good tips and starter techniques but I can’t recommend any because I have only been trying for about a week.
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my tips are:
I. get some books (dont have to be new, library or used is fine) which have a really good reputation on amazon (so as to not be guided in a wrong direction early on). E.g., meditation for dummies, mindfulness in plain english, jack kornfield, etc. Audiobooks are also cool, I hear them during breakfast, washing up, laundry, etc.
II. go to a local meditation group. a few are great, many are alright, a few can be really messed up and disadvantageous. so try out several and see what suits you.
III. sit down and let things happen.
Not at all! I mean it depends on what type of meditation you’re doing.. for mindfulness meditation that’s exactly what you do. it’s all about “being” in the moment. You don’t want to let your mind wander to the past or future because it is not real, what you have around you, your body, that’s whats real. also when you’re meditating, you should not develop opinions about your observations. just take note of things. You can think when you meditate, you kind of have to.. your minds even thinking when you sleep (: it’s constantly making connections, you can’t stop those that i know of. The goal is just, like i said, to be in the moment and focus on what you know is real.
@james books, studying and methods… i dont put stock in. they tend to lead you down a road of interpreting someone elses words and tbh, its not likely that you’ll get it right. there are however simple things that make the whole thing a hell of a lot more effective.
your last post was very telling though. observing isn’t the same as thinking. and the 2 can, but dont have to run in parallel. if not thinking is your goal, stop being anti-thinking. its counter productive (see what i did there?) relax completely. there’s nothing wrong with thoughts. if i were to encourage anyone to do anything it would be to stop judging the thoughts that arise. without judgement they have no traction and release themselves. then eventually wind down. non-judgement non-resistance and surrender are your pillars.
@bryan, enjoy it. appreciate it. stop fighting and this shit releases itself.
Bryan, what I usually do (I’m a master of my own brain-radio, haha) I listen to the ringing of my ears very hard and find another song to listen to. FORCE that song to be thought of over and over and over. It will get the old song out eventually. If anything, try this:
It works by playing a slightly more annoying or catchy song that will override the old one XD
Now for getting rid of the songtrack in your head COMPLETELY, that just takes practice and willpower, haha.
One more tip Bryan…
MY MILKSHAKE BRINGS ALL THE BOYS TO THE YARD, AND THEY’RE LIKE, ITS BETTER THAN YARS.
it depends on what your goal is. the assumed intention of meditation is enlightenment. But there isn’t a single feature of it, as it is commonly practiced, that would lend to enlightenment that i can see, though i’m hardly versed in all methods as i said before. its a nice connsequence of enlightenment that this shit is hella easy, sure, but its not like… something i particularly needed to do before, nor is it something that i actually do now. more just something that happens.
But yeah. penn and teller put it best i think. basically they disected the benefits of yoga and meditation in terms of what they actually give you, and the rest is just a bunch of ideas used to justify the guilty pleasures of relaxing and stretching as part of some “greater spiritual journey”.
As for tolle… the best you can hope to pull from his work is a decent kensho buzz, most intense one i ever had lasted for about 6 hours and was just after a couple of hours in satsang with tolle when he was here. glad i did it, but it was basicaly spiritual crack (aka, “spiritual” practices releasing endorphins and seratonin).
Got halfway through a book of tolle and have left it unfinished. He gets madly repetitive and crawls deep inside his own spiritual ass. I have never heard of penn and teller but sounds like my kind of thinking so I will check that out. Ever since I got into the philosophy of eastern spirituality I’ve been interested in meditating but arrived at the conclusion last week that it, too, is of the ego, and therefore can only hinder someone’s constructive thinking patterns.
penn and teller have a tv show called bullshit where they debunk commonly held beliefs about thngs. they are 2 pretty big magicians who are following in houdini’s footsteps.
I would be more inclined to recommend listening to tolle than reading him, not even for the content. the man exuthes peace and bliss, its what he’s done with his enlightenment. he’s narcotised himself to the world. which is something very peaceful to be in the presence of. his voice just has a really soothing quality to it with excellent projection. meditating on a sunny day in a park + listening to tolle = Big boom kensho that lasts for a couple of seconds. but ya have to know how to do something without reaching for it. thats the function of surrender really and the hardest part of surrender is surrendering surrender xD.
But yeah, the thing about ego meditation is that its counter productive. you need to get your genuine motivations clear. or rather. just not have any. i mean, your thoughts about things don’t do fuck all for the actual things. the way i see it, meditation is pausing the story, what a lot of people do, as i perceive it, is make meditation part OF the story and thereby completely defeat the purpose of it, which is lack of purpose.
I’m more of the mind of surrendering any imbued purpose on anything and just living that way. but well. i ended investment in my story. now its just life.
Something that works for me is just let your thoughts drift. If a thought comes by, that’s okay, but don’t follow it (i.e. thought = i wonder what i’ll have for lunch today? following = turkey sandwich maybe). Just let your brain simmer.
I LOVE what Dan said. Will definitely try that.
@danfontaine…learning to let go of the ego is the process one goes through with meditation…this is why; when, you meditate you let go of all thought…the point behind meditation is to connect to the spiritual world…in order to do this you have to let go of the self :D
I had some trouble with meditation starting out, so I’ve taken too intense mindful cardio. I do cardio interval training, which consists of a brisk walk with intense sprinting at intervals, usually 45 sec. @ 3.5 mph and then 30 sec @ 11 mph. After about 10-15 minutes I get the famed endorphin rush which is a pretty decent high, but then I use this mental break to turn it up, and take shorter breaks with longer spring intervals.
After about 5 minutes of this second, faster pace, I am 100% completely focused on the burning sensation coursing through my entire body. It is all I can do to not give in to the cramps, lack of oxygen, and legs that performing way better than I ever thought possible. At this point all I can focus on is keep going to finish the workout, it is the ultimate mindfulness high. Every neuron and impulse in my brain and every thought is on this very step, followed by the next, and the next, and that if I stop I will surely die right there on the spot.
This is where the magic happens. The energy to keep going almost seems to come from my soul. Right when I feel like my body is about to shut down, I run just a little longer and then a little longer and I feel the most powerful energy you could ever experience. I could swear I tapped into my actual soul to give me the energy to keep going. I experience the most intense inner peace and tranquility in my mind body and soul that is as close to enlightenment as I will probably ever get. It only takes about 20-25 minutes to complete, and I assure you will feel like the truest part of you that you could ever be. It is the only time I can physically feel my soul, and it almost connects my soul to reality and I feel more alive than ever before.
Meditation isn’t about being empty headed, it’s about being empty minded. Your head will still have thoughts, and soundtracks, and objects. But you simply accept them and release them from your mind. I don’t set time aside for meditation often, but when I do, I always start the same way.
“Hello World. I see you, I know you are there. (breathe in) I am letting you go now. (breathe out)
Hello Ground. I see you, I know you are there. (breathe in) I am letting you go now. (breathe out)
Hello shins, calves…
Hello thighs… Hips… Pelvis… Stomach… Back… Chest… Hands… Wrists… Arms… Shoulders… Neck… Head… Face… Mind…”
Each time, I take a breathe in and “see” that part of me, then breathe out and let that part melt away from me. I also allow random thoughts. I breathe in, recognize the thought, breathe out and ask it to melt away. I allow myself to laugh while meditating, if I think of something funny, and then I let it go. Since I have ADD, I sometimes spend more time letting thoughts go than anything else.
Woah thanks for all the input everyone. Trying to guess what comes next definitely clears the mind 0.o I’m taking all these into consideration and trying most of these tips randomly. however, I’m trying not to put anyones purpose for meditation or opinions on mediation too close to my meditation.
anyways, your guys’ stuff is helping. thanks. i’m way better at holding focus for longer now.
curious about gettin rid of this ego thing though…
The core of meditation is awakening to the true mind, the mind that is ‘behind’ the ordinary mind, through the gateless gate. One of the core teachings of the Buddha was impermanence, everything (including you) is changing, all the time. And so is your vision, your hearing, your stream of thoughts (thought, thought, thought, I, thought, thought, I, I, thought, I etc). and every other sensation.
Just try to notice the ever changing present, don’t get caught up in another stream thought, don’t try to be anywhere else, just embrace this moment fully.
With training, it all comes easier :)