I honestly believe that “we are spiritual beings enjoying a physical respite, here.” I also believe that ultimately, life is a spiritual quest …for wholeness, completeness and reconnection to our ultimate source! I believe the words of Jesus and Buddha and Ghandi regarding Meditation and “Thinking on these things!”
Why? Because I have proven them true in my own life! I find I resonate deeply with the poets like Blake and Rumi, Kabir etc; because they resonate with the Divine/ The Universal Consciousness, the Source of all. Again yesterday I was drawn into a substantive discussion about life. I was sharing, (after being asked) and I shared Prayer, Meditation and the Dissolving Practices of the Water School of Taoism as put forth by Lao Tse. Well, someone interrupted, and for the sole purpose of saying “I don’t believe that”. I said, “so what!” that doesn’t change anything does it?” He paused a bit bewildered, nodded in agreement. Truth is truth, it’s universal, and no religion or tradition has a corner on it!
I think we lived in a time of “Premature Evaluation”, trying to name this and that, categorize and type everything…perhaps so that we would run out of time to ‘allow it to be absorbed’ and become real in our lives. By perhaps naming it, people can fool themselves into thinking they have ‘dealt with it, or how do we say it…”Put it to bed?”
My Wife Dawn studied Spanish for many years, and even was an Interpreter in South America. I asked Dawn once when she finally knew she ‘knew Spanish’ had gotten a ‘hold’ on it. She responded that it was when she started dreaming in Spanish. It became a part of her. I share that to share this…”we live in very in substantive times! Most of our everydays consist of the Mundane !” We have for the most part ‘lost’ a very essential part of ourselves. Many people ‘can no longer feel’ ! BK Frantzis the Taoist master responded to the question…”pick a theory”: as one is as good as another…”As a defense to avoid mental/emotional horror; Industrial societies are inclined to reduce human beings to unfeeling machines; perhaps it’s the “Electronic World” of image without substance…where sights and sounds are disembodied from human feeling; or it might be the current bent of “Virtual Reality”…(virtual means ‘almost’), like those Reality TV programs.
One of the first things I learned about Taoism and life-practice was to go deep ! My Teacher was a wise woman, from China who was teaching around, and she shared…”it is the Practice that leads to freedom…the practice of actually doing Chi Gung/Tai Chi and Meditation.” Meditation is a straightforward process- and very practical in everyday life. I have found that meditation helps with Stress, Befuddled thinking, affords balance and centeredness, and even allows me to find perspective and to slow down.
There are a myriad of additional benefits to meditation, and I urge you to engage and find them out for your self. One my most precious realizations is “the softening of my mind and thoughts…most of the rigidity is gone”!… “Just come apart and rest a while”. Within the realm or practice of meditation there are gifts or results to be enjoyed/realized…and they are for everyone, not just a chosen few. Yes, I know of traditions that say that the “gift of becoming ‘connected’ to Universal Consciousness can only be granted by “Gods Grace”; and it can…and I also believe that those who receive it realize it from silence and hard work…Meditation…Stillness…it is what creates the environment for the ‘gift of Grace’ to occur. OH, and yes, “Grace” is a word and concept found in Taoism and Buddhism et al….Really! “Meditation is not about religious beliefs, the supremacy of one religion over another, or about what a human being should or should not do. Rather, it is a ‘tool’ (and not another religion)…a tool to help you find within yourself that spiritual spark, the inner-truths of the Universe.” It is the “something more”…that “more” that makes us human and divine at the same time, even if we do not yet realize it. It is also true that one need not cease being a Christian to engage in Meditation any more than one must be a Taoist in order to practice Tai chi chuan!
“You see, there is clearly something ‘more’ in people; more than simply the intellect. It is this ‘something more’ that we seek to know in Stillness and in Meditation. Meditation is a very important facet of life, here and now; else why would Jesus and the other great teachers of wisdom like Buddha, Muhammad, Ghandi, Lao Tse and Chuang Tse, Rumi and Kabir and countless others down through the years up to and including the Dali Lama, entreat us to Meditate! On your way to Oneness with the Universal Consciousness/God or by Whatever Name you name the UnNameable One, The Creative and Sustaining Power of the Universe…you’ll discover wisdom and balance and peace-of-mind, and even rest. Try It, You Just might like it ! Just remember, “Meditation is not what you think!”
I rather like what Kurt Vonnegut wrote about Thinking : “Thinking doesn’t seem to help very much. The human brain is too high-powered to have many practical uses in this particular Universe!” And let us not forget our friend born in Ulm who said : ” The problems that exist in the world today cannot be solved by the level of thinking that created them “… – Albert Einstein However, the more you engage in Meditation the more simple it becomes, and the more fruitful it is for you. You’ll be able to relax more and often quicker and deeper; and the more you are open to and engage in Meditation, the closer you’ll come to arriving at your own connection to the Universal Consciousness; whose intrinsic balance will naturally focus through you the qualities of Love and Equanimity, Joy, Compassion, Generosity, Kindness and Wisdom…and rest and peace !
I have not tried to defend or define meditation for you that is your personal discovery. I also have not tried to tell you what life is or isn’t, and yet, the Blackfoot Indians would say: “What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset…and more”…