Meditation for Thursday 28th April 2022
Concentration, tranquility and insight are the stages we experience in meditation. Without concentration we can’t empty the mind to allow tranquility to flourish. Without tranquility we cannot experience that clarity and openness that fosters insight. Without insight our meditation will not progress beyond relaxation.
There’s nothing wrong with relaxation as a goal but to fully benefit from our practice we can and should try to gain insight. Insight will take us into the ‘inner world’ of our mind where if we are to make progress demands that we abandon our intellect. This world is intuitive, a place where we suspend questions and accept the here and now; the present moment as our only experience.
Meditation is only truly effective when it becomes a part of our lives, not only in terms of regular practice but also in terms of the importance we attach to gaining insight or wisdom. Our motivation to proceed along the path of living a meditative or mindful life is crucial to progress.
However weak our motivation once we set out on this path there is no turning back.
There will be times of great struggle where we will doubt, where our body will rebel and where our mind will coax us to give up. There will be times when the mind stays calm and other times when it feels like ‘chatter-box corner’. But once we resolve to embark upon this path we will never entirely abandon it.
The gifts of meditation are many but among them are stillness, beauty, understanding, engagement with rather than separation from, truth, honesty and sincerity.*
These gifts and many more are ours when we dwell in silence in the present moment.
*‘The Psychology of Meditation’ by Michael West.
A reminder there are programs offered by the Carmelite Centre that may be of interest.
Take a look at www.thecarmelitecentremelbourne.org