My hope here is to assist people in entering into a practice of meditation. I know the benefits of practicing meditation, I am not going to try to sell you on it, but assume that those who land here are seeking to establish a practice and therefore I will provide some tips and offer a range of facilitated meditations to support you on your journey of exploration.
It is important to create the time and to adhere to it in as far as possible. By time I mean the intended duration of your sitting time and when you will do so.
I find first thing in the morning works best for me, between when I get up and I have my breakfast. If I leave it until later then I find I am squeezing it in and thinking ‘oh I must do my meditation’.
Ideally you sit twice in the day, a 20 minute sit in the morning and a 20 minute sit in the evening, but for now determine to sit once and define both the time you will do so and the duration. It makes sense to start out with a plan to sit for 10 minutes, this should be achievable for most people.
You want to choose somewhere that is relatively free from distractions. Distractions can be temperature, other people in your home, phones, TV, radio and so on.
Choosing indoors or outdoors, it doesn’t matter as long as you can be relatively free from distraction. It is not possible to be totally free from distractions but it is good to minimise the risk at the same time.
I will talk during one of the guided meditations about how to incorporate distractions into our meditation, when or if they occur.
Using the same place consistently can be good too as this then becomes your meditation space so entering it brings you into that intention to meditate.
There is a lot said about posture and sometimes it can become a distraction in and of itself.
It is important to find a posture that suits yourself, one that you can maintain for a prolonged period.
Whether it is sitting in a chair, sitting on a prayer stool or a cushion, in the lotus position or whatever, the important thing is that it is comfortable for you, that it is relaxing but not to such an extent that you will fall asleep.
Ideally, you sit with a straight back, your feet touching the ground and your hands resting comfortably in your lap or on your knees. You will find a posture in time that works for you.
Perhaps the most important element is your intention.
You come to meditation with the intention to be still, to open yourself to the stillness that is within you. That is all that is required, the intention to open yourself to the stillness that is within you in this moment. To open yourself to who you are.
Let us begin………
10 Minute meditation focusing on breath.
You can read the script of the meditation here
You can listen and follow along with the mediation here
An animation introducing meditation
The following is a short animation film introducing meditation to people that have never meditated before – especially Christians who think it is not part of the Christian traditions. With this in mind Paul Demeyer, an animated director based in Los Angeles produced “How to do Christian Meditation” and generously shares as a supporting resource for WCCM, the World Community for Christian Meditation.
For more meditation resources from WCCM click here