Meditation is a broad word. It describes a set of tools that create conditions for a deeper state of awareness and focus. And as such, it doesn’t describe one particular approach or method.
Every practice has its own unique characteristics and features. Outside of a specific school, there is no right or wrong way to meditate.
David Johnson practices the Gelug-pa tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. And has done for over 30 years. He shares some gentle thoughts about how to start, nurture, and develop a practice (regardless of what tradition you might be drawn towards).
Practice and Meditation
There is a temptation to give up or try something else when things get hard. But in any kind of practice, the process IS the goal. It is through repetition that success is seeded, nurtured, and grown. When we are not attached to an outcome, we succeed every time we show up.
And in the case of meditation, we see it working through a deeper awareness of what’s going on within.
Awareness expands inside the space between stimulus and response. This is where we can watch thoughts, emotions, and reactions rising within us, as we experience life and the world around us. Rather than identifying with those things, we begin instead to choose how (and if) we want to engage with the thoughts, feelings, and urges that spring to mind.
In The Episode We Talk About:
- What meditation is (and maybe isn’t).
- Why meditation practice can become overwhelming and confusing. And what we can do when we find ourselves down rabbit holes.
- The sole (or soul!) concern of meditation.
- The difference between the use of meditation and mindfulness as a sticking plaster and meditation as a doorway to inside-out transformation.
- The practice of Tonglen.
- Why goals around meditation should be broad.
- How to know if meditation is ‘working’. And why that’s not necessarily a great way to think about it.
- Why community (being with others) is important when it comes to building meditative practices into your life.