Meditating 9 to 10 hours a day for 10 days straight envelops you in a weird microcosm bubble.
Within this bubble, meditation experiences hold brilliant analogous truths for life as a whole.
While many arose, came to light, then faded away into the distance over the recent 10 day silent meditation course I just finished, some big ones stood out and I’d love to share them with you. Hopefully they help you start the new year more “in the now” and help you avoid unnecessary misery and suffering in 2018.
#1: You have to start where you are, aka, See the reality as it is – not as you would like it to be
Oh my god this was such a big one I can’t even tell you! For the first 7 days I kept comparing my current meditation experience to past ones.
Why can’t I have this or that amazing experience??? I kept thinking this, dwelling on the great things that happened in the past instead of where I was currently at and what was really happening in the now.
HUGE misery created! And by misery I mean physical pain. To sit still without moving for 1 hour straight in the Adhiṭṭhāna (strong determination) sittings, you have to have extreme mental focus, and when I was thinking about the past and craving, I did not have the needed focus and so experienced a lot of pain 😫
Finally around Day 8 at the Adhiṭṭhāna sittings I was able to be 100% OK with exactly where I was at and what I was experiencing. And only then was I able to begin making progress again and get through the 1 hour without moving.
So my questions for you are – Where are you living in the past and how is that holding you back? What delusions do you have about what “should” be happening, which are keeping you stuck because you’re denying reality?
#2: Dhamma, the law of nature, will work for you to get you what you want, but it takes time and continued effort
So many people want to run a spiritual bypass on life! They want to magically get from point A to point B without doing any work in the physical.
Well my friends, that ain’t gonna happen and the longer you delude yourself that it will, the longer you stay stuck in misery.
Apparently I don’t – or rather DIDN’T, lol, because post-meditation course I now DO 😁 – have a lot of patience. I wanted to magically be at an advanced point in meditation immediately without putting in the time and effort.
And when that didn’t happen, I went into push push push push push push push mode… I tried to use my mind to force the progress, and in doing so, I lost the balance of my mind and therefore actually started digressing!
I’m sad to say that this went on for a while until I finally found my inner balance.
And once I did, well, everything changed. When I trusted dhamma and did the work, trusted that if I just kept following the technique and maintained my balanced mind I would progress – I did in leaps and bounds.
But in order to do so, I had to let go of my tight grip on the reins and let go of the delusion I could magically get far ahead asap.
It can be scary to let go of control and to keep walking down a path even though you’re not seeing results. What if dhamma doesn’t work? What if what I want doesn’t happen? I also had to let go of the wanting.
Balance is of utmost importance, for when you have that, you have everything because you are truly ok with anything.
So my questions for you are – Where are you pushing, where are you super attached to an outcome, where are you not trusting that things will work out one way or the other? In what areas do you need to bring in more balance? In what areas are you trying to run a spiritual bypass, wanting magical results, and not putting in the time and work?
#3: A lot of your mental energy is wasted on shit that doesn’t matter
Holy f*ck did this ever become apparent to me as I observed all the stupid things I think about! And I don’t just think about them once, I think about them over, and over, and over again…
In our day-to-day lives we don’t take the time to observe our thoughts and so they run rampant. But given 10 days of silence … all I could do was observe my thoughts.
It’s not about coming from a place of judgment and condemning yourself for thinking stupid things. It’s the nature of the mind to wander off and it’s up to us to train it to focus by bringing it back.
So consider this – what if you were actually in control, you were able to train your mind to stay focused and not run around like a crazy monkey?
What would be possible then? What amazing things could you use your mental capacity to create in your life?
These were questions I pondered and got some great answers to over the 10 days.
And honestly this is why I try my best to do a 10-day meditation every 1-2 years – because in day-to-day life my mind gets unbalanced and starts chattering like a monkey again.
Having 10 days to bring it back to center is essential for me. I work out my body, so it makes sense to me to work out my mind too.
So my questions for you are – What stupid, useless, repetitive thoughts are cluttering up your mind? What can you do to either release them, resolve them, or shut them down? With the freed up mental energy, what incredible things can you focus on now?
In Love, Light, and Truth,
If you feel like your mind has you running around in circles and you would just love some help getting clear and organized, let me know, email me!