My Experiences of Practicing Meditation
- In this paper, I will give details of my experience in practicing meditation. I joined the mediation class this semester and I have gained a couple of experience, which I would detail in this paper. Throughout the semester, we were taken through various lessons on meditation, which I loved a lot. We were scheduled to do practice meditation everyday along we are learning new concepts. Throughout the semester lessons, I learned several things about meditation and how it relates to Confucianism, Buddhism, as well as Daoism. Buddhism, as taught by Gautama Buddha, is about teaching people the path to enlightenment that is designed to liberate them from the cycle of death and life. At the moment, there are three branches of Buddhism namely Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana.
- I have had few different experiences through my mediation practice term thus illustrating all of them might not be a huge task; however, here, I will point out the most significant experiences only which I had during the term. I started learning and practicing the mediation the beginning of this term after being introduced to the class by my close friend who has been doing meditation for close to one year. Before I joined the class, I used to question all sorts of things including my relationship to life as well as the concept to self, and what I should think about during meditation. Fortunately, the things that disturbed my mind started becoming clear as I study meditation. The first day I sat down and meditated, I wondered what my meditation journey would be like. The feeling of meditation is totally different within a daze; meditation is mainly focused on our breath or our spiritual objects.
- Majority of people know mediation as simply sitting down, closing eyes then focusing on an object; however, it goes beyond that to include doing things that help a person to improve himself or herself either from physical or spirit in his or her daily life. In essence, mediation implies a complete transformation of the mind. For instance, Buddhists use meditation practices and techniques that are designed to encourage and develop emotional positivity, clarity, concentration, as well as calmness in seeing the true nature of things- this has been my experience of mediation as well be illustrated well in this easy. With regular work and patience, these mediation practices have helped me to focus my states of mind and deepen into new profound energized and peaceful states of the mind. Such experience has created transformative effect and led to develop a new understanding of life and my environment.
- Confucianism relates to learning as well as refining of character to help a person develop into an exemplary person with ability to act with integrity, authenticity, honesty, and trustworthiness. It mainly focuses between humans. Meditation is linked to Confucianism through its purpose of bringing out the inner virtues of one person and uplifting all the society members in the right way. I have learnt that in meditation, Confucianism involves the study of technical as well as classical mastery of some rituals, which are subsequently accompanied by reflection as regards their meanings. In essence, this requires the person meditating to make some efforts in applying the lessons learned to his or her course of life so as to make a difference. Moreover, the point of practices in the deference in Confucian’s meditation also inspired me in my everyday We should not just blindly follow, listen, or obey and do something unnecessary to other people, we should do something other people really need. We also need to be kind to others and have a positive life attitude.
- Even though there are many things that are truly beyond our control, it is possible we can take responsibility in controlling the states of our mind through meditation to make things better and better. Buddhist philosophy asserts that controlling the states of our mind is the best and most important thing we can do to make things better. Furthermore, Buddhists teaches that taking responsibility in controlling our mind is absolutely the most realistic antidote to personal sorrows, anxieties, hatred, fears, as well as general confusion of every human being to beset their condition. Meditation originated from the Buddhist practice and culture and has proved to be essential to every human being in achieving a state of higher experience.
- Buddhism is a religion that is based on the Dharma. Dharma contains four noble truths and Eightfold path; Dharma is also the key concept with multiple meanings in Buddhism. What is more, six parameters are the actions that Buddhism encourages us to do because they are likely to decrease our mental confusion and emotional conflicts – they are known as Transcendental Actions or The Six Parameters. They include actions such as giving, conduct, restraint, wisdom, patience, and energy or willpower. According to the tradition of Buddhism, these actions are important part of meditation practice. For instance, without wisdom, we are not able to understand and distinguish between truly harmful and truly beneficial actions. Without meditation practice, we cannot truly develop or cultivate wisdom – the meditation techniques help us to change our overall mental outlook.
- It is advisable to work with positive mental states. There are several remedies for working with negative emotions such as recognizing your aspiration to happiness, application of emptiness teachings on co-dependent, application of specific antidote to negative emotion, using shamatha practice to stabilize the mind, exercising self-control, as well as redirecting emotions among others. The specific remedies to disturbed mind states include ignorance, depression, hatred, desire, anger, as well as boredom. Throughout the entire meditation process, I learnt that both negative and positive thoughts tend to reinforce themselves. The concept of Buddhism is esoteric because the transmission of certain teachings to a student only occurs directly from teacher during an empowerment. It is impossible to learn these transmissions from books.
- Daoism is a philosophical, ethical, and religious tradition of Chinese origin that emphasizes living in harmony with the Dao, and Daoism is focused mainly on “human and natural”. Daoism connotes to a road that has been made thus can be travelled on. It can also be seen as the active project of building a road. Daoism essentially experiences interprets and influences the world by reinforcing and extending the inherited culture for one’s predecessors. Daoism is my favorite meditation compared to the rest I did this semester, since it also taught us some ideas that very essential and important in our life. Nevertheless, Daoism’s meditation is not just doing the sitting practices, but also staying humble in our daily I remember that I was extremely anxious during my midterm period, I was hard to focus on my mind while I was doing meditation. I tried to calm down to think something rather than my exams, but no later than two minutes, I started to think about my exams again. In addition, I did not have adequate sleep during that time. I often woke up from my dream, even though I cannot remember what I dreamt. The time for meditation has shrunk, but I have a better understand of the Daoist practice which is to know my limits. Therefore, even though I am still meditating, I cut down the time to make sure I will not surpass my limit. This principle enables one to do what makes him/her feel good and comfortable and not to turn oneself into an unwell situation.
- I think Daoism is useful when it comes to the practice of recognizing mental states. In order to achieve this, I chose a day when I was having difficulties then I was determined to carefully notice and track the course of my mental state three times on that day. I noticed that several difficult states such as agitation, confusion, worrying, anger, restlessness, grasping as well as misconception would appear together. It is essential to focus your mind in order to reach a stable state: this can be achieved simply by looking straight at the emotion and allowing it to liberate and dissolve as it arises. I tried looking to see where my thoughts and emotions were coming from and where they were disappearing to. This actually allowed me to perceive the space that surrounds my emotions and thoughts, also known as the “gap in consciousness”.
- The time I practiced my first meditation and record my experience – the confusion within me was vivid as I tried to figure out what my experience would be. I sat on the chair in the classroom, surrounded by my classmates. Even though they all my classmates, but since it was our first meeting, I felt surrounded by strangers. My thighs were sour, my eyes could not stop rolling, my face was in the fear of unknown. I was trying to meditate but my mind was simply calculating how long I had been sitting in silence and how many seconds were remaining for me to finish the task, this was the first time of my meditation practice. The confusion continued throughout the first time as many things were ringing in my mind not sure what to do and how. However, on the second time, I had a different experience: the meditation process was able to make me calmer and better able to sleep. I felt so nice person going through these experiences. In the rest of times, I felt mildly pleasant but something was missing. The moment we shared with other classmates later on, they described to have seen colors, developed serene understanding of the life complexities and experienced heightened states of happiness or bliss, wonderful things that I longed for but did not experience. Even though these never happened to me, I felt being moved to a higher state of the mind slowly as I meditated though confused.
- I continued practicing meditation at home, which lasted for about ten minutes in each session. Throughout the semester, I was practicing meditation at home twice every week, especially at night before I went to sleep. The principles and concepts of Daoism were very essential to me practicing meditation at home especially as it brings out an important role in recognizing my mental states. At class, we learned about using Daoism practice to recognize mental states, which I put into practice at home. In order to recognize my mental states, I chose to practice meditation at home on days when I felt like having difficulties in mental states. During this time, my primary aim was to carefully notice as track various courses in my mental states using the principals we have learned in class.
- While practicing meditation at home, I noticed several mental states as I experienced them. Some of these states I experienced include confusion, agitation, anger, worrying, restlessness, grasping, as well as misconception among others. The type of mental state that I went through each day while practicing meditation depended on how my day had been. For example, I experienced worrying mental state when some issues bothered me before the meditation process. In a similar manner, mentally, I could experience confusion mental state when some issues disturbed me. Sometimes I could go through a mixed range of mental states, which I could not clearly identify.
- Throughout my experience, I realized how important it was to focus my mind in order to reach a stable mental state. I could not achieve a stale mental state especially on days when I did not perfectly focus my mind. However, in most cases, I managed by simply looking straight at the emotion and allowing it to liberate and dissolve as it arises. I tried looking to see where my thoughts and emotions were coming from and where they were disappearing. This actually allowed me to perceive the space that surrounds my emotions and thoughts, also known as the “gap in consciousness”. However, it is essential to focus on the physical sensation and energy of the emotion without getting lost in the content.
- Good posture was very essential in helping me achieve a stable mental state. As we learned in class, there seven recommended postures namely (1) sit cross-legged, (2) place spine absolutely straight like an arrow, (3) with palms up, rest hands one on the other in the lap, (4) neck should be slightly hooked, (5) shoulders should be slightly stretched, (6) tip of the tongue should be touching palate, and (7) gaze directed downward about four finger widths in front. Both full-lotus and half-lotus positions are excellent for establishing stability of body and mind. It is achieved by gently crossing the legs by placing one foot or both on top of the opposite thigh.
- After sticking to the intense body sensation for a while, I noticed that my mind was getting calmer and my body felt energized, all of which gave me a positive experience. I felt my hands and feet getting warmer as I dissolved into being aware of my breathing. At a particular point when I was counting my in-breaths, I felt real energy rushing into my body to a point where I felt a little uncomfortable. As I continued counting my in-breaths, I felt an uncontrollable wave of extreme energy, which suddenly made me to feel good and pure pleasure. Suddenly, I was getting physical aroused but I freaked because I was in the presence of many people in the hall. Even though I tried, I found it very difficult to control this feeling of too powerful sense of pure pleasure.
- In conclusion, mediation is a little bit difficult because it requires proper posture as well as a complete lack of movement for several hours. A high level of concentration and focus is required to experience mediation. Good posture is essential because it directly determines how your energy would move during the meditation process. Meditation would give your body warmth because it moves energy easily in and through the body. There are different types of mediation; however, deep mediation is the most popular as it gives people many benefits. Those who practice deep meditation, as we did, become aware of their soul, energy, as well as other important realms of life. All of us were able to raise their vibrations to a level that we were able to communicate from other dimensions.
- Most people achieve complete stillness when they use breath meditation, during which time disappears and the person is able to go back to the source. You will be full of energy when you finish meditating as you get aware of your body in the most profane and intense manner. Just as I experienced, complete feeling of joy and gratefulness of the beautiful world will take you when you finish meditating. However, I have to admit that sensation seeking is a rhetorical device of meditation. This is because meditation is not all about the colors or happiness of a higher experience.