What you need to know as a beginner
Just like we go to the gym to train our bodies, we meditate to train our minds.
Meditation refers to a practice of being and not a specific thing. As a beginner, you might find it very difficult to sit still in a meditative posture for hours and try to empty your mind by not thinking about anything. And that is the worst thing you can do to start practicing meditation.
Meditation is not about having an empty mind or not having any thoughts or thinking about peace and bliss. That is just a myth. Meditation is actually very simple. It is not as complicated as some of the meditation gurus (read entrepreneurs) will make you think so that you spend your moolah and make them rich to find inner peace.
Meditation is nothing but a simple practice that most of us over-complicate unnecessarily.
In the simplest terms, meditation is about awareness. It is about being aware of your breath. Remember how I asked you to breathe in and out? The act of inhaling and exhaling and putting your complete attention on your breath. That is the core of meditation. This is how we train our minds. This is the basic concept of meditation. You don’t need a guru or an app to meditate. However, I am not saying it will hurt to have someone guide you.
Meditation is not about doing nothing. Meditation is not about emptying your mind. Meditation is not an escape from life. Meditation is simply about being aware of your mind.
What is meditation?
“Meditation is a single lesson of awareness, of no-thought, of spontaneity, of being total in your action, alert, aware. It is not a technique, it is a knack. Either you get it or you don’t.” – Osho
Today meditation has gone mainstream and most of the successful entrepreneurs, A-list celebs, music producers, and athletes diligently practice mindfulness meditation. But what is meditation for beginners? What does it actually mean to meditate?
Meditation is simply a practice that helps us develop a state of ‘thoughtless awareness’. Through this practice, we can cultivate an alert yet calm mind and find a deep and profound experience within ourselves. It is not about turning your thoughts off or blocking out your feelings and emotions. Meditation is about observing your thoughts and emotions without engaging in them or judging them. You simply acknowledge whatever arises in this state of being and let them pass without holding on to them.
The practice of meditation for beginners will not change your personality or make you a better person. It is a 2,500-year-old practice for training your mind and being aware. When we meditate, our mind becomes relaxed, calm & inwardly focused. Through practice, our mind eventually becomes clear and silent and there are no internal distractions. This is when you have a deeper meditative experience.
The experience of meditation for beginners
The moment you sit down and start to meditate as a beginner, you need to let yourself become alert, relaxed, and still. Once you are relaxed and alert, you bring your attention to a particular thing which can either be your breath or a mantra. As you start the practice, you will feel your mind wander repeatedly. This is natural.
However, you need to be aware of this and bring your focus back to your breath or the mantra that you are focused on. It is not important how many times your mind wanders. What is important is that how aware you are about it and whether you successfully bring your focus back every time without engaging in your thoughts.
The practice of meditation for beginners will help you cultivate a highly focused, alert, and relaxed state of mind over a certain period of time. The meditative state will not only help you experience a sense of enhanced well-being but will also have highly positive neurological and physiological effects on you.