Do you have difficulty keeping your thoughts quiet during meditation? Do you mull things from the past or fidget about the future? If this sounds familiar, you are not alone. Humans have suffered the busy-mind syndrome for thousands of years.
Like exercise workouts to tone the body, meditation is an exercise to discipline the mind (quiet those darn thoughts). Here are some tips to simplify your meditation practice. (As you practice, it gets easier.)
Focus on your breathing. Turn your attention to the gentle inhalation and exhalation of your breath. At first your ego mind will try to control the breathing, and it will feel awkward. Let it pass. Simply observe your breath.
Focus on the space between your thoughts. That seemingly empty space is where you want to be. Your thinking mind will not understand, but the essence of your spirit will. That space is where you connect with the divine universe. Even if you can only stretch it to a few seconds, consider that a success. Try again. Observe breath and when the thoughts abate, revel in those few moments of emptiness and silence.
Personalize a mantra or affirmation. Find an affirmation that supports your current inner spiritual work. For example, say you are working on reducing your judgments of others. A possible affirmation might be: I release all judgment and criticism. I accept you as you are, and you accept me as I am. As you breathe, repeat this affirmation in a loving manner.
Acknowledge a power greater than self. Whether you call it God, Spirit, Universal Intelligence, The All That Is, or whether you prefer to worship wood sprites and angels, acknowledging a power beyond the mind of the personality enhances your practice and accelerates your spiritual growth. I lovingly accept my kinship with a benevolent, divine universe.
Release resistance to what is. The past and future are illusions of what was and what will be. All we ever have is the present moment. Now is where you change, grow, and experience life in its fullest. I release resistance to what is.
Blessings of light and love.
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