These difficult times of the pandemic make us insecure, anxious, sad or angry. Especially if you lost a loved one to this virus. The first days and even weeks can degenerate into running, diving, flying, falling and getting up again. Finding peace seems to be more difficult than expected. In fact. Everything that was common before becomes unusual. How can I find a moment of peace again?
Dear Hetty and other readers. Compare finding a moment of attention with planting a seed. If I carefully put a seed of a lettuce plant in the soil, the waiting begins. That can take quite a long time. After a week you want to dig up the seed to see if anything happens in the ground. Do not. You know you can damage the seed. Please wait patiently for the first leaves. Waiting can be an ordeal. Yet you know inside that the carefully sown lettuce seed will be worth the wait. This is also the case if you cannot immediately find the moment of rest. You must be patient and not strive. Just be nice to yourself.
When we try to get something else, or desire to be somewhere else, we move towards desire or aversion, instead of accepting the reality of how we are or where we are. This creates problems. We try to calm down, or get rid of negativity, or force ourselves to insight.
Most of us meditate because we want something from it. Maybe we have read about the positive effects and we want them for ourselves. It is good to have a certain intention, without an intention we quickly lose our motivation, especially if nothing seems to be wrong, or if something we don’t like is somewhere on the horizon.
Still, striving for success seems to get in our way somewhere. When we try to get something else, or to be somewhere else, we move towards desire or aversion, instead of accepting the reality of how and where we are. This causes problems. We try to calm down, or get rid of negativity, or force ourselves into insight. We then begin to force ourselves towards results. Inner peace comes with practicing, but only if we stop holding on to it, avoiding it, or ignoring what is already happening. Inner peace comes only when we use it as a method. That means we have to let go of the struggle and become friends with reality.
Letting go or condemning our daily practice of meditation is what is taught in the mindfulness of breathing. It is wonderfully simple. Be aware of and follow the breathing as it currently takes place. Let everything be as it is, and if you find your mind or thoughts walking with you, gently return to your breath. If you keep practicing this, the results will take care of themselves.
Exercise: Mindfulness of breathing
ONE. Find a quiet spot and sit on a chair or cushion. Choose a chair with a sturdy flat seat and keep your back straight. Let the soles of your feet touch the floor and bring your hands to your thighs. If you sit on a pillow, you may sit cross-legged. Let your body be like this without any sensation and embrace openness and confidence.
TWO. Decide how long you want to practice. Your session can be five minutes long or much longer. You may find it useful to set an alarm to indicate when you want to stop. This way you don’t have to think about the duration of the meditation.
THREE. Bring your attention to the sensation of breathing in your stomach. Let go of thinking or analyzing your breathing. Feel the natural rhythm of breathing with attention: in and out, the movement of your abdomen. Leave thoughts, emotions, bodily sensations and sounds for what they are. You don’t have to follow or push it away. Allow them to happen without any interaction, gently go back to the focus on your breath.
FOUR. If you find your thoughts running like they like to do, be aware of that fact but with love. Realize that if you are aware of your thoughts running, you have a choice about the next step. You can bring your attention back to the full breath and continue to follow it, in and out, moment by moment, with kind attention.
FIVE. Continue with steps three and four until it’s time to quit.
This article is an extract from “Into the Heart of Mindfulness” by Ed Halliwell.
Find a mindful moment and start “being aware” of your breathing. The main advantage of meditation is that you can start it again any time of the day.
Depending on the measures issued by the government, I will soon start slowly again with the Metsämieli “Forest Mind” walks. If you are interested in joining, check http://www.paulsbuitencoaching regularly. com. I will also warn in time in the Sunday blog. These walks have always been a meter and a half of society, but I want to continue to follow the guidelines of the authorities. How impatient I may be about reopening my practice. Safety is paramount.