Life for so many is a perpetual whirligig of sensory excitement and adventure; of constant motion, momentum, and mobility as one squeezes all that one can out of the world’s cornucopia of delights. While there is something to be said for St. Irenaeus of Lyon’s “The Glory of God is a human being fully alive”, I believe that the Essence of God Consciousness is to be found in silence and stillness: in a word – meditation.
I took my first serious plunge into the world of meditation at the age of 18. A newspaper article on TM (transcendental meditation) piqued my interest; and so over a two week Easter break I packed my duffel bag and took the bus to Dublin where (while staying with my Godmother) I attended a nightly course on the history, philosophy, and practice of TM. I “graduated” and started practicing TM (twice daily) for the next 4-5 years; through college and beyond.
Having explored other forms of meditation over the years, I now practice a simple form of meditation akin to Centering Prayer, where the use of a mantra is minimal and the experience is one of resting and quieting the mind in the stillness and silence of Divine Consciousness.
What Meditation is Not About
The practice of meditation is not a luxurious commodity that one uses in a self-absorbed manner for self-indulgent pleasure or stress-relief. While there are many mental, physical, psychological, spiritual, and emotional benefits to meditating, the art of meditation is essentially about the dissolution of ego so that a deep sense of communion with life’s universal energy/consciousness can be experienced (and applied) for the good and well-being of all.
More important than spending time, money, and energy in seeking new spiritual experiences through new teachers and knowledge, is the experience of Divine Consciousness within and the spiritual vision arising therefrom. This can only be attained through regular meditation.
The aforementioned “spiritual vision” is the acquired ability to view the world, others, relationships, and the whole interconnected web of life, through a spiritually elevated and enlightened lens – one that (through regular meditation) can inspire real change and healthy activism in one’s life and relationships
Whatever form of meditation you are comfortable with – in your “sacred space” or group setting – the daily practice of meditation is ultimately about the expansion of human consciousness and the dissolution of ego-fabricated “walls of separation” we have constructed within our hearts, homes, and global community. We are, and can never not be, One!
Until our next yarn: Don’t give me “I don’t have a minute in my crazy schedule for the luxury of meditation: that’s well and dandy for the Tibetan monks but not for me!” – I know you can spare 20 out of a daily 1,440 minutes for a silent encounter with God!