How is your meditation? Relaxing, reducing stress, soothing?
Anam Thubten in No Self, No Problem – awakening to our True Nature suggests meditation is not a teddy bear. It is not a touchy-feely experience, where beautiful feelings arise. The Path to Enlightenment, to finding our True Nature is a challenge. We can be the best meditators in the world, but unless we are prepared to be challenged by our meditation, nothing will happen. It will just be like nibbling on candy which makes us feel good but nothing happens in our awareness. We remain unaware whilst being great meditators.
Thubten goes on to suggest meditation is like riding a bicycle. A bicycle will not run by itself. If you stop pedalling, it will fall over. This is like unenlightened consciousness – it dies unless it is worked at.
Many Reiki students find their practice is troubling. There are many rocks in the Path to be negotiated. It is not a place of silence that is always peaceful, though there are, just occasionally, moments of illumination, that sudden bolt of lightning in the dark of night that lights up the whole sky. If we do not ‘do’ anything in our meditation then we are just perpetuating suffering. We are holding on to fear, anger, pride, jealousy. It is just like rolling a snowball; we work very hard pushing the snowball and it just gets heavier and thicker until we can no longer roll it. We stop pedalling the bicycle, we do nothing because there is nothing we can do.
Now we have reached the state of non-doing, we have stopped, we do not try to get anywhere, we let go all those exertions and surprise, surprise – the Truth is revealed to us. We go in and down, we no longer worry, there is nothing to lose and so we dissolve into Oneness.
The struggle we have is we feel we have to ‘work at it’ but the work in reality is letting go. Having the courage to go boldly into the silence, to be still, where “I” do not have to chase anything to be whole. Where the Mind becomes quiet, all the distracting games the brain plays stop.
One Buddhist Master suggests we meditate 108 times everyday – What?! How can I do this? Another Master suggests carrying meditation practices into daily life. Just Pause. Just Stop 108 times a day, be in the present moment, just wash dishes, just walk, just eat mindfully and at least 108 other things that Thich Nhat Hanh suggests we do daily. If you cannot find 20 minutes to meditate, then meditate 1 minute 100 times a day. Meditation is not actually a ‘practice’. It is a pause, it is being in our natural state, just being present, just stop rolling the snowball or pedalling the bicycle.
Now we can meet our fear like an old friend as are pride, jealousy, guilt etc. We can, in that moment, surrender to our Inner Wisdom, surrender to the Inner Guru, we can now question what we think are truths. We can become aware and let go. We can let these ‘old friends’ go and discover our new peaceful friend – silence.
In silence, the darkness vanishes and our True Nature is allowed to Light up the world. Our Heart opens to Divine Love and we no longer have to search. We are right here, right now – there is no other place to be.