the image of the peaceful meditator is just another distraction

Think of all the commitment, stamina and focus required to maintain an 11 minute meditation that challenges you mentally, physically and emotionally.

Transformational yes?

Now, we all know the image of the peaceful meditator, a yogi sitting in  a sublime space, with soft eyes, heart smiling; Beautiful – but, I’d like to suggest this image creates an unrealistic goal for us meditators, dedicated to the gritty reality of developing self awareness and personal growth. This image of the peaceful yogi, sets up an easy opt-out for practicing meditators as we decide a meditation is ‘not working’ if we feel distracted, uncomfortable, irritable, bored, challenged – all good reasons to go do something else – however absolutely missing the point.

I say this, as it’s important to recognise the magnificent achievement of sitting in an uncomfortable space and holding that space for yourself.  It’s in this process that we become stronger, more aware of our niggles, our mental barriers, of how our emotions play out, how our thoughts influence our lives. Meditation is an accomplishment of will. Developing the strength to stay with a process creates a holding space, so we can then surrender to grace. The silence that comes from moving through the grit is sublime. But best we leave behind the notion that it is the end goal. Rather, see it as a little flag that you have courageously passed through some pretty big challenges and achieved some degree of self control and mind mastery. Something to be considered, to be pleased with, but far from the finish line – there just is no finish line.

Do you think it would be possible to learn true compassion for yourself without feeling through your limitations, without experiencing the truth of yourself when challenged, without breaking through some personal blocks to recognise how much you love or how much you already feel God?

Meditation rocks for this very reason. It takes us through a process – a journey that brings us right to our true nature while challenging our consciousness. We become stronger, more aware individuals cultivating an unwavering connection to the divine within.

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