Back when I was still a stoner I used to “meditate” with my friend Ted to the Rush songs on the 2112 and Hemispheres albums. Sometimes this involved pot, sometimes alcohol and once in a while candles – lots of hand movements and singing along. Very serious business that increased the presence of the 12 gods in my life.
When I got sober a few years later I learned about Step 11
Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
Through the years in meetings all over the country I’ve had the opportunity to hear about how others have meditated. Some folks talked about how they meditated in the shower, some how they meditated on their way to work in the car or even like I used to do – listening to music that inspired them (with or without candles ).
I was pretty dumbfounded about the whole idea and just faked it mostly. When I’d pray or have a quiet moment I would consider that to be my meditation and “enough” of an effort to improve my conscious contact. It wasn’t very satisfying and truthfully, I didn’t do it very often and I never really felt calmer or centered as a result.
Then a few years back I was at a workshop where the leader of the workshop guided us through a Mindfulness Meditation. I was skeptical but learned long ago to “fake it til you make it”. I followed her instructions and guidance as we placed our feet flat on the ground, had our backs straight and breathed in and breathed out, simple counting and focusing on pushing out the outside distraction and noise – sure enough I actually felt more at ease, more centered and relaxed. This was what I was looking for.
Granted, I’m still not a daily user – I have my faults that may be difficult for some of you to come to terms with.. sorry to disappoint – but when I do use it my day, my situations, my people places and things are so much easier to deal with. I’ve even used it when I’ve not been able to sleep – due to thoughts racing around in my head or something that was bothering me, it really helps to ease all the noise.
At first I came to scoff… Anyway, meditation, Mindfulness Meditation in particular, has become a really welcome part of my life and I can’t recommend it enough to folks. There are some links here that you can click on and read more about it and I’m sure there are places in larger cities where you can be guided through. The thing is not to quit trying – you’ll gain peace in the trying to get there.
Five Types of Meditation: http://www.fitsugar.com/5-Types-Meditation-18949375
Mindfulness Meditation instructions: http://www.shambhalasun.com/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=2125
More on Meditation: http://www.spiritualnow.com/articles/20/1/The-Different-Types-of-Meditation/Page1.html