The scientific technique of meditation helps us to observe the nature of our minds and arrive at the truth of suffering within how we are agitated, what it is that irritates us and what makes us miserable. In the scriptures and in the words of the awakened spiritual Masters, the mind has often been described as a monkey intoxicated with alcohol, or even as a wild horse that we need to tame. Apt metaphors indeed, but to understand this truth about the nature of your own mind you need to go deep within yourself to observe this truth objectively and honestly.
Meditation teaches you to just observe. For example, if you are miserable, just observe the misery as misery, without feeling compelled to do anything about it. As you start observing, the cause of misery becomes clear because you are reacting with negativity, craving or aversion. But as you keep observing that sensation, it loses its strength and passes away. And the negativity passes with it.
Meditation also shows you why you feel the way you feel, how you have become what you are and the repeated patterns of behaviour that you are conditioned to operate under without awareness. The goal of meditation is not to achieve just another transitory other-worldly experience, but to accept whatever manifests itself with equanimity and ease. This way, mental conditioning is eradicated layer by layer and along with it suffering is removed.
The ego, in its own respect, has convinced us that we desperately need it. In fact it goes beyond not only that we need the ego, but also that we are it. I am my body. I am my feelings. I am my thoughts. I am my personality. I am suppressed. I am sincere and honest all these are the earnest pleadings of the ego.
The mind is like a camera: it creates, perceives and records reality. Its depth is unfathomable, its breadth unimaginable and its energy boundless. Meditation, which takes you beyond the mind, raises the question,Who am I really? The powers of the mind should be concentrated and turned back upon itself. Only then will it penetrate into its own innermost secrets, as it is the darkest places that reveal their secrets to the penetrating rays of the sun.
We shall then perceive for ourselves whether or not we have souls, whether or not life exists for five minutes or for eternity. And whether or not there is a universal consciousness.
Relax Your Mind
As the wise say, the proof of the pudding is in the eating and in this chain of thought we must never discount something as untrue before actually trying it out for ourselves. Scientists like to define meditation as a state of restful alertness in which the mind is relaxed, yet alert. It is often called the meditative state of consciousness because it is different from our normal waking and sleeping consciousness.
Since the mind is the source of happiness or unhappiness, stress or mental composure, sickness or well-being, failure or success, it is only logical that we should direct our attention to the mind. Even doctors admit that at least seventy per cent of physical diseases are psychosomatic, that is, they originate in the mind. So for every ten people who declare themselves sick, seven suffer from illnesses that begin in the mind, whether triggered by fear, worry, anger, jealousy or any other negative emotion.
Once you begin meditating, you become more peaceful, less reactive and more stable all these states bring greater efficiency to your life. Anxiety and panic are a waste of energy. Tense muscles, overactive nerves and an overactive mind drain our energy reserves. Becoming calm rejuvenates us once again. Calmness and vitality are complementary. People who are hyper may seem energetic but they are actually fuelled by nervous energy. They end up being irritable and mentally exhausted when their nervous energy wears off. You can feel the beneficial effects of meditation right after the few initial sessions. The early results are subtle but cumulative. So, with every passing day you will find yourself a little less stressed, a little happier and a little closer to your goal. My advice to you is, try meditation; it has to work.
As you extend the time you spend meditating, the requirements of both your body and your mind will keep changing. The challenges that you will be able to take up will become greater and very soon the skill of meditation will turn into an art. It will flow so easily that you will be able to enjoy it immensely. And, like the circle of life, one challenge will lead to another, making life more beautiful and meaningful than ever before.