On the journey to the ocean of calm there are a number of thieves lurking in the dark whose only intent is to steal your treasure, to prevent you from reaching your core. Their intent is to ambush you.
What follows is a list of the most ruthless thieves to inner calm, how they operate, and how to avoid them.
1. One Thousand Thoughts.
* Allow them to be there
* Keep refocusing on your practice.
2. Storm of Emotions
* Total awareness technique is perfect for this
* Use your body to express, however slightly, your emotions
3. Monkey Mind
* Write down your list of “to do’s” as each appears
4. False Master
* Recognize that the thought, “I’ve mastered this,” is a trap. Then, return to the practice.
* Mastery is doing the technique constantly.
5. False Expectations
* Remember the analogy of the rusty garden tap; often it takes time for pure, clear water to flow.
6. The Judge
* Keep bringing your attention back to sensations in your body, and remember the first three Laws of Meditation – relax, be gentle, and be playful.
7. Super Calm = No Thoughts
* You will always have thoughts. Allow them to be there. Simply keep your attention on your meditation practice regardless of what thoughts appear.
8. Super Calm = Less Thoughts
* Totally allow thoughts to be there, like a distant sound, or an image appearing in your peripheral vision. Gently keep your attention on your practice.
9. Super Calm = Positive Thoughts
* Meditation is a journey deeper than thoughts regardless of what thoughts they are (positive, negative, profound, mundane). Allow them to be there. Gently keep your attention on your practice.
10. “I’ll Never Use My Mind Again.”
* The mind is like a tool. Use it when you need it. Drop it when you don’t. Great meditators know the difference.
11. “I Must Ignore My Thoughts.”
* Meditation has nothing to do with thoughts. It has everything to do with focusing on the now.
* Meditation is like holding onto a chain-pulling link-by-link, moment-by-moment, into the core.
Adapted from Meditation in a New York Minute, by Mark Thornton (Sounds True, 2004). Copyright (c) 2004 by Mark Thornton. Reprinted by permission of Sounds True.
Adapted from Meditation in a New York Minute, by Mark Thornton (Sounds True, 2004).