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What is meditation?
When we hear about meditation the first image that may come to mind is the one of a Buddhist monk, sitting crossed-legged with his eyes closed. This is a good picture, but what is he actually doing? What is he thinking about? EVERYONE can sit on the ground and close their eyes; does that mean that we are meditating then? WHAT ON EARTH DO WE NEED TO DO THEN?
Have you ever tried to do just that? Just sit down and close your eyes. If not it could be a very good idea to put that into practise. Let`s just see what happens. How hard can that be really?! It`s pretty easy to just sit and close our eyes, but the mind!!! The main obstacle IS the mind. That thing just won’t stop! Is it normal?? And then what? Do I just sit there and listen to it? Really what`s the point, I already do that all day with my eyes opened! What is supposed to happen? What do I have to do?
The main problem, the only problem, is the mind. Meditation aims to clear, to heal the problem. If you were to watch a beginner trying to meditate, you would probably notice how tense his face is, and how concentrated his eyebrows look. On the other hand, if you were to look at the face of a practised meditating monk, you would notice how relax his face is, and how peaceful and blissful he seems to be. What is the difference? The difference is what is happening inside. On one side the head is full of thoughts, it`s messy, it`s busy, and it`s scattered. While on the other side there is nothing. There is no thought. There is no mind. Just peace. Just quiet. How do we get there? With a bit more practice time.
Think of meditation as a tool. If you want to lose weight for example and get a bit bigger biceps on your arms, you would go to the gym and practise some weight lifting. The toned arms probably won`t appear during the first week, but if you keep to it you`ll gradually notice signs of improvement with time. In a few months your arms could start looking as good as you want them too. Meditation is like the weights in the gym. But instead of training your body, you will train your mind. And god, you really feel the weight at the beginning too!! That mind seems SO heavy! But the more you train the easier it gets. Until the weight feels like a feather. Until the mind becomes like a breeze.
Why meditate? Do I need to?
Are you happy? Are you really happy? If you answered ‘yes’ then you probably don`t need to meditate. Just close the book and go back to enjoying your life. If you answered ‘no’, or’ not all of the time’, or’ it depends on the day’; then you would probably benefit from meditating.
Meditation can change your life. Meditation WILL change your life. Actually it will not change your life as such, but it will change YOU. It will change how you live your life. And that`s life changing!
Where do I start?
This book aims to give you some tools, some techniques to practice meditation. You will not learn by reading, analysing, understanding, judging, or intellectualizing the concepts in the book. You will learn by PRACTICING the different meditations. It`s like everything really, you will learn by doing. It is pretty straightforward and easy in a kind of way. First of all you don`t need anyone else to start practicing meditation. Just you, it`s quite simple. Secondly you don`t need to have any money to start, it`s completely free!! Also you don`t need to have any special body requirements, you don`t need to be fit, skinny, healthy or anything else. As long as you can sit down on the floor or on a chair you can meditate. At the worst you can lie down. Lastly, you don’t need to be employed, you don’t need to be unemployed, you don’t need too much time or too little, you only need a mere twenty minutes a day to start with. Just wake up twenty minutes earlier or go to bed twenty minutes later if you really need to. That is all. Really no excuses!
TRAIN YOUR MIND!
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