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Being a better me: meditation diary weeks 4,5 and 6... I think

Updated on March 15, 2013
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On your marks, get set...

Well hello there everyone! It has been quite some time, and I must apologise because I have been ill and as a result unable to summon the energy to do even every day basic tasks like standing and walking, let alone writing and publishing. I at one point thought I might be able to at least finish the audio recording of God's Shoehorn II and III but (of course) I ended up losing my voice before the final cut was done to my satisfaction. I can now officially say, however, that I am better and gnawing at the bit to get more writing done for your delectation.

I wanted to start by publishing this update on my journey to enlightenment because I've had a wee bit of a break through. I seem to have developed my ability to focus my attention enough now through the meditation practice that the speed at which I am improving has increased noticeably I also seem to have more explicit control over my mental/emotional states. I am buzzing with the sheer pleasure of it!

I have also become hooked on itunes U which (as anyone who read my 'knowledge is the best drug on the market' hub will know) is right up my street. I am starting a new job in two weeks, but currently am working as an art-technician in a secondary school which is a sort of 'fill-in' job to give me bread money in between the serious stuff. This job does not require me to do a whole lot of thinking. This new marvel I've discovered has allowed me to listen to some of the most fascinating lecture courses all while my hands are occupied doing things like glazing and preparing paints or clay for classes.

I am listening to Psychology lectures, Philosophy, Astro-biology, Entrepreneurship... the list goes on and so far everything I've heard has been inspirational! My brain is on fire!

Today I woke up at 6:30 in the morning and... du du daaaaah! I wasn't even annoyed about having to get out of bed! I showered, got a coffee for myself and my fiancé and then we both meditated for half an hour. It was a good meditation. Calmness and clarity from the start of my day. I can tell you quite honestly - I was still in a partial trance state through my whole drive to work. The beauty of the reds and golds of the autumn leaves on the trees along my route to work nearly moved me to tears. How ridiculous is that?! I usually barely notice there even are trees!

This is the painting  Ash is working on at the minute. It's at the foot of our bed - not a bad thing to see on waking up I think you'll agree! :)
This is the painting Ash is working on at the minute. It's at the foot of our bed - not a bad thing to see on waking up I think you'll agree! :) | Source

I listened to lectures as I glazed some clay sculptures in the morning. I was inspired by an entrepreneurship lecture from Stanford about micro-finance companies and the developing movement towards for-profit organisations doing work for positive social change. Great stuff. I left the school at lunch time and drove to the closest park. After talking to my lovely Ashley on the phone briefly, I did another meditation. This time sitting out in the open on a bench with the sound of wind rustled leaves filling my ears. Stunning! In the afternoon I listened to lectures on the geological, biological, and cosmological revolutions which have reinforced some basics I have become rusty on. These lectures are part of the Astro-biology course which I'm thoroughly intrigued by. After this stupendously stimulating afternoon I went out and had an unplanned dinner out at a local country pub with my fiancé after which she showed me the progress on the painting she's been working on...

I feel like I've woken up after being in a doze for half my life. I know this is a peak in the journey and no doubt my current ebullience will not be maintained at a constant... but I know I am heading in the right direction. I am ending the silly habits I have picked up in recent years. I am focused on what I want. I am furthering my personal growth and I'm determined to take people with me as I go.

Eckhart Tolle

I found this video clip of Eckhart Tolle answering a question from a fan. Watching this was particularly useful in getting past the point where I was thinking too much. That is - once I got over how big his nose is. I mean... wow. That is a hooter and a half. Once you get past that - what he says to answer the guy's question is fabulous, give it a try.

He talks about a problem that we all have - which is our addiction to thinking. We all have addictions in some shape or form. Addiction to thinking can lead to anxiety or depression because we dwell too much in the future or the past. Eckhart gives a few techniques for practicing perceiving the world and ourselves without the interference of concepts and thoughts i.e. secondary analysis and internal discussion of the perceptions that you are having. Marvelous stuff.

Binaural beats

I also found something else which I am experimenting with. So called binaural beats (these need to be listened to using headphones) are supposed to be able to induce deep trance states in listeners. I found this one on youtube. Check it out and tell me in the comments if you have any success. I'll get back to you soon with my own results.

Thanks for reading - I'll be back on schedule again now that my health has been restored. Happy meditating folks :)

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    • Dan Barfield profile image
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      Dan Barfield 4 years ago from Gloucestershire, England, UK

      Thanks for the comment Highland Terrier. I know what you mean when you say people don't think enough. However, there is a semantic point to raise... am I correct in assuming you mean that people don't think things through properly? Or that they don't take enough consideration?

      When Eckhart says people think too much he is referring to useless thought. Banal and purposeless thought.

      For example, say you are sitting on a park bench in a beautiful place. What is the likelihood that instead of appreciating your surroundings properly, you will rather be worrying about something that has happened, or something that may soon happen... or even worse, just following random tracks of thought like:

      That jogger is a bit fat for lycra. Why does anyone wear lycra?! I mean, for god's sake - it's so inconsiderate of other park users' aesthetic enjoyment of the park! Hmmm, I'm hungry. What do I have in the cupboard at home...?etc ad infinitum.

      It is so easy to spin off into random spurious whirlpools of inconsequential thought! It is incredible how much time and emotional energy is wasted on useless thought. It can even be self destructive. Have you ever found yourself creating scenarios in your head in which some kind of conflict or argument about something occurs. I have - it has actually caused me to have an emotional reaction in that I have become frustrated or annoyed - all as the result of something I just created in my head. Let me repeat that... I caused myself to become less happy, by inventing a non-existent scenario in my head. How absurd is that?

      The point in doing these mental practices, is to exert skillful control over the self and one's own emotional states.

    • Highland Terrier profile image

      Highland Terrier 4 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Either I'm as thick as two planks or this video made no sense. I do not know what the chap is saying.

      I find people don't think enough, including myself. Or is it a different type of thinking he is speaking of.

      Any way this hub has me thinking that I'm missing some level of understanding. Which will have my brain wrecked for at least the next 24hrs.

      Nice to see you back.

    • Dan Barfield profile image
      Author

      Dan Barfield 4 years ago from Gloucestershire, England, UK

      Thanks for the comment billybuc! Gotta love Elkhart tolle's wisdom eh? I've spent so much of my life going through imagined scenarios in my head. How much time is wasted on things that are unchangeable having already happened or having not happened yet? Have you ever meditated yourself?

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Addiction to thinking.....boy oh boy, is that ever accurate. My motto needs to be simplify, simplify, simplify. I had a sponsor once who told me I could make a typhoon out of a glass of water. LOL

      Great thoughts this morning.