I was inspired to write this post because of an article I read on pop culture site Blogcritics.
It’s great to see meditation becoming more mainstream and accepted by people from all walks of life. A blog post on a site like Blogcritics is another great step in that direction.
What I like about the article is it’s timeliness. The author connects meditation with our troubled times, noting that the average person has many pressures and stressors every single day. Whether it’s financial worries, family trouble, employment issues, or any number of difficulties that life seems to throw at us every day, 21st century living is complicated. It’s hard to believe, but I’ve read that we receive more information in a single day than our ancestors 100 years ago received in an entire lifetime!
The stress and pressure of daily demands wears on us mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. While there are numerous incredible remedies you can put into place to help offset the damage all this causes (proper diet, exercise, massage, other stress reduction methods), meditation is the only single technique I know of that is able to bring all of those aspects into harmony at the same time.
Meditation, as I’ve discussed, is a simple process of quieting down the mind. It unites mind, body, and spirit, allowing you to get in touch with your true self. Meditation will help you deal with life’s challenges and will also help you understand the things that matter most to you.
The original article talks about meditation for 30 minutes to an hour. That’s great if you have the time. In fact, I recommend 30 minutes twice per day as the optimal meditation time. However, I realize that not everyone can take an hour a day—at least not in the beginning.
If you’re brand new to meditation and pressed for time, I recommend you start with 5-10 minutes of simple meditation per day (I’ll be writing more about simple meditation in upcoming articles). Once you commit to that short amount of time on a regular basis, you’ll see the benefits and want to increase the time you spend in meditation.
There is one thing the article suggests that I don’t completely agree with: using music in meditation. I think music is best utilized during guided meditation where you have someone taking you through a unique process that often includes visualization. Using music in daily, non-guided meditation has the tendency to draw your attention outward. In meditation, our goal is to bring our attention inward and limit outside distractions.
Once you become more experienced with meditation, you can try utilizing music. I occasionally use CDs that are designed to take my meditative state deeper, and they do produce a nice effect most of the time. However, I consider this practice to be different, or supplemental, to my daily quiet time.
Enjoy, and happy meditating!