When we sit for meditation we may encounter many distractions, problems or annoyances. These occurrences can show us what we are like in our everyday life. By observing ourselves in meditation and how we react we can take this knowledge into the real world. We can see that the meditation cushion is just a reflection on our life. If we practice consistently we become more alerted to our tendencies. When we create this awareness about ourselves we have a real opportunity for change and growth.
The reason we all get a bit stuck is we like to run from our problems and run towards our desires. We don’t want to do the work. We don’t want to make time. We want to make excuses. We can’t accept the parts of us that don’t sit with us well, preferring to not see the truth of our situation. It is important for us to learn to accept the less pleasant sides of ourselves, our tendencies or inclinations away from the bad and towards the good, our shortcomings, our yearnings to be something else. If we learn to see ourselves as a whole with many different parts some good, some bad and we accept this in a kind, patient and non judgmental way then we are clearing the path for growth.
The Buddhist teachings say when we have something bad in our lives that we must confront it and really look at it in a mindful way. It is like we are caught in a trap and we must take the trap apart piece by piece and examine each piece. When we dismantle the trap we begin to experience freedom.
Here are some common problems we can experience when we meditate. Do you experience them in your everyday life? Physical discomfort, drowsiness, odd sensations, boredom, inability to concentrate, distraction, fear, agitation, trying to hard, resistance, dullness.
If you are at a stage in your life where you want to create real change then we must go through the fire and cross the threshold to what can be a brighter version of ourselves. We must say yes to change and no to the things in our life that are holding us back. We have to want to take responsibility for how we live our life.
Practice for today: If you don’t meditate try today just this once to create time to sit for five minutes and see what comes up for you. Accept each sensation or emotion as it arises without judgement and with kindness and patience. Try not to reject of judge the parts of you that you don’t like.