I'm Just Saying…

June 1, 2011

There’s No Place Like Om

Filed under: Daily Life — jillamyrosenblatt @ 7:39 pm
Tags: , ,

Meditation is good for you. Meditation helps clarify and clear the mind, bringing peace and relaxation when one takes a moment to stop – and focus. The stresses of this world melt away and the spirit feels rejuvenated and refreshed.

That sounds wonderful.

Wait a minute. Why don’t I meditate? As a matter of fact, why doesn’t everyone?

I would like it duly noted that I have, on several occasions, attempted meditation. If there’s some kind of points system, I think that’s worth at least a five. I’m just saying. I would also like it noted that my personal best is twenty minutes. I have focused on my breath, listened to the faux sounds of crashing waves from my “Oceans of Tranquility” CD (and no, it’s not really called that). I was gentle with myself, forgiving myself when my thoughts wandered, tenderly leading my mind with acceptance and self-love to refocus on my breath.

I have to tell you, a few days of meditating and I was a tad edgy, even tense. After a week, I developed an eye twitch. I don’t know if there’s a “right” way to meditate, but obviously I was getting it wrong.

It’s no secret that the concept of meditation does not exactly gel with the zeitgeist of the Western world. We are a people on the move, getting things done, places to go, people to see, dragons to slay. The idea of sitting still, being still, doing nothing, thinking nothing… this is anathema to our Roadrunner way of life. After all, where is the tangible benefit? What do I have to show for spending some quality alone time with… me? If I’m not moving, I’m not doing, and if I’m not doing… I’m not getting things done.

To be fair, it appears that meditation is a flexible art. They say (whoever they are) there is no set time for meditation. Morning or evening will do. Well it’s not going to be the a.m. I can tell you that. I am NOT a morning person. And evenings?… It’s the NBA finals… and the NHL Stanley Cup Finals… I wonder if there’s any rule about meditating during the intermissions…

To tell you the truth, I was hoping there might be some Wile E. Coyote ACME Meditation kit available. You know, learn to meditate in five easy steps. Once again, I missed a memo. Meditation is referred to as a “practice.” I have to practice keeping my mind still. This shouldn’t be a problem. I can watch a block of the “E” network’s fine reality show programming and believe me, my brainwaves will flatline, no problem. I guess that’s not the same thing.

Finally, I found what I was looking for. An article on the Internet touted how to meditate anytime, anywhere, for five minutes. It’s so easy, I can sit at my desk at work, pay attention to my breath and before I can say “Who’s your bodhisattva?” vive enlightenment. And I wouldn’t have to do any shuffling of my busy schedule.

In the end, meditation is not really made for multi-tasking. But I keep thinking, what is the fascination with meditation? Is it the meditation itself, or the idea that we should be looking for something, whatever that something is, that is deeper than the surface of activity and noise, apps and gadgets, something that we can only find in the silence. It was Mahatma Gandhi who said “I have so much to do today, I will need to meditate twice as long.” Clearly, five minutes, just isn’t going to cut it.

So I tried one more time. I got up early one morning before the alarm. I closed my eyes, surrounded by the sweet sound… of silence. I relaxed, looked inward, and found in the recesses of my mind… Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face” looping in my head. I lovingly and gently guided my mind back to the sound of my breath… and Gaga was still there.

And then my alarm went off. So much for meditating.

There’s always tomorrow.



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