Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Sometimes a mind may wander

Sometimes, just sometimes, during mindful meditation, my mind will wander from concentrating on the breath. What does that mean to me? It certainly sets me back into a position to get clouded and, invariably, suffer if I don't gently reign it in. Meditation has been practiced in one way or another for thousands of years. I suspect every practitioner throughout the ages have experienced what I have been experiencing lately.

Letting myself get down about it is not the answer. This Buddhism, path to enlightenment, thing is not easy. No one ever said it was. Being set back implies that I expect something from the meditation itself...a feeling, a place in my general psyche. Mindful meditation seeks no goal. Sitting, kneeling, on a mat or zafu, in a chair....has only one point in mind: NOTHING. Zip, zero, nada. The point is to be empty. To concentrate on the breath. I practice other meditations as well and then concentrate on various points to improve or progress along my path, but mindful Zazen is the base form of meditation for me.

With mindful meditation one can prepare themselves to be open enough to practice other forms of mediation (Metta, etc.). Meditating on the Seven Limb Prayer for instance or chanting the Heart Sutra is essential to a healthy Buddhist practice. As a human being that is responsible for my own suffering, I must gently bring myself back to the basics of mediation. I then can be of ultimate service to all beings....after all, isn't that what this fleeting, precious life is all about?

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