Meditation: The First Step
I want to meditate. I have heard that meditation brings sharpness and peace. Closing my eyes, I sat one day. What is this? The waves of thoughts buffet the wall of my brain. This looks scary. The mind is on the run. What should I do? Should I firmly control the flow of the thoughts? But that is disgusting. Okay! Let the thoughts run their course. But that is digressing. If thoughts and mental turbulence is not brought under check what use the closing eyes is? Wasn’t I better off not trying it?
That’s how it is for a new meditator. Now you start searching the internet for some guidance. The key word meditation typed on the Google and what is this- hundreds of the theories, the schools of meditation practices: The Heartfulness Meditation, the Mindfulness Meditation, the Vipasana, The Transcendental Meditation, the Zen Meditation, the Kundalini based Meditations, and the list goes on endlessly. The problem mystified. Which one should I practice? Which one would be the best? These are so different from each other, how to know which one gets the quickest results?
And the journey ends before it could begin. Or if it does after all, it wouldn’t last. So what is a seeker’s first step to meditation?
First understand what it is. You must have listened people say that it is effortless state of consciousness. Most of these prescribers are theorist meditators. They have meditated on gathering theories from books rather than practicing it even for a shorter period. Had they done they wouldn’t have prescribed the syllabus of PhD to a first class student. Yeah! You read it right. Effortless state of meditativeness is the fruit and not seed. To reach there, first you will have to understand your mind. Nay, watch your mind.
What is mind? Thoughts, emotions, memory, imagination, perception, let’s say leaving aside the debate. And meditation? First, to watch the train of thoughts. To watch and create a distance from the thoughts as a watcher. Sorry, it again became philosophical. What to do, the topic is of such kind. Anyway let us learn the technique to take first step on meditation.
Let us do the bubble meditation. Have you ever been into a swimming pool? You must have seen the air bubbles rising towards the surface and disappear. This meditation is simply based on this bubble trait of thoughts. They are also like bubbles arising every second and disappearing. So let’s do it.
First Step: Sit with the spine straight. Either on the chair normally or on the ground in lotus posture or comfortably.
Step Two: Close your eyes. Now your mind will run into the past or fly to the future. Nasty memories or fanciful wishes. Negative emotions or day dreams. Don’t worry, that is the nature of mind. Let it do its business. You just relax.
Step Three: Conceive yourself sitting at the bottom of a pond, a beautiful pond. Now as the thought comes into your mind, conceive that thought rising from the crown of your head as bubble towards the surface and disappear. The thought bubble rises towards the surface and disappears. You just are seeing it happen. The thought keeps on rising and bubbles keep on flashing and withering away towards the surface. If no thought no bubble. If multiple thoughts, multiple bubbles. You just are a witness, a passive observer.
This is what bubble meditation is. As simple as that but as effective as any form of meditation. In beginning your attention will falter. You have given a new task to your mind. It will run away to other realms as it always does. Don’t worry. Bring it back to the business of watching thought bubbles.
Now will it bring a miracle? Friends, not at all. But it will cast off the layers of your mind one after another. Between two thoughts lies a zone of calm and peace. Gradually it will take you to that zone where your work will become not less than a miracle for your friends. But only on one condition- that you do it fifteen minutes a day regularly. No meditation is better than the other except how regular the meditator remains. And one day you will find meditation becoming your habit, an effortless ease.