The year is almost over and I still have so many things to accomplish on my plate — work, business, pleasure and leisure, passions and hobbies, the upkeep of the house and everything it entails, maintenance of good health, taking care of relationships, etc.
But since we only have 24 hours a day to do everything we can to be productive and live a balanced life, more often than not, it really takes a strong willpower and determination to be able to squeeze in everything we need to do day in and day out including the not-so-important and urgent tasks. Because of this need to be “superwoman” (or superman for our men out there) in so many ways, I remembered the importance of meditation. I am after all, a full-time and hands-on work-from-home mom, which means I am an all-around 24/7 caregiver, helper, yaya, breadwinner, homemaker, partner, cheerleader, and everything else in between and I need all the help and support I can get to remain sane, healthy and happy. I am just so thankful because I have a male counterpart doing same things I do to lessen the burden while at the same time doubling the joy and fulfillment in our little family. But still, there are days when I get so overwhelmed and having a great partner is not enough…
SO ON TO MEDITATION…
Meditation is a key exercise that can bring you to a state where you can access the power of your psychic intuition. With the very busy schedule most people keep, many people feel stressed and over-worked. Most of us feel like there is just not enough time in a 24-hour period to get everything done. Our stress and fatigue make us depressed, ill-tempered, and frustrated. It can even make us sick. We are usually very busy living our fast-paced lives, we feel there is no time to stop and meditate! I’ve been there for many years and I’ve suffered the consequences especially health-wise so I know what I’m talking about.
But what many people don’t know about meditation is that it actually gives you more time by making your mind more relaxed and focused. And when you’re focused, you become more efficient, and more productive with the way you spend your time. Therefore, more things can be accomplished. An easy 5 or ten minute breathing exercise or meditation can assist you in overcoming your stress, and find some inner peace and balance.
I had an American client before who was a psychic and working for him I learned that the more things you have to do in a day, the more time you have to spend in prayer and meditation. It centers your energy, making you more focused and better aligned with the universe, which in turn makes you accomplish more things in a given period of time. This is because meditation frees your mind from clutter, cobwebs and stress thereby giving you tunnel vision and focus. And before you know it, you’ve already done everything on your to-do list and more.
EFfECTS OF MEDITATION
When you meditate, you become more efficient and productive because it calms you down and makes you see things more clearly so you are able to better prioritize the stuff you need to do in a day and weed out those things that are not very important. Prayer and meditation can help one imbibe the power of tunnel vision that people who do this on a regular basis end up doing greater things than those people who seem to be very busy yet accomplish nothing of real significance.
We can teach ourselves how to change our mind’s inner programming from negative to positive, from disturbed to peaceful, from sad to happy. Overcoming negative thoughts and cultivating positive ones is a profound spiritual practice you can enjoy throughout the day, not just while seated in meditation.
I remember when I was in Taiwan for my 2-week meditation and Buddhism retreat, I learned that everything you do can be a form of meditation. You can do eating meditation, sleeping meditation, breathing meditation etc. One day the bathrooms were assigned to me and I was tasked to clean the toilet in one of the temples in Fo Guang Shan Monastery (located in Dashu District, Kaohsiung) and I was meditating… while cleaning the toilet! It’s all about clearing your mind and focusing on your breathing.
See some photos below of my meditation retreat:
early morning assembly
prayers before meals
listening to Buddhist teachings
WHY LEARN TO MEDITATE
The purpose of meditation is to calm your mind in order to eradicate mental discomfort, and be able to attain a worry-free state of being. Otherwise, if you let your mind wander, and focus on the negative things in your life, it would be difficult to attain peace and happiness. Through constant meditation, you are training your mind to be pure and clear. With clarity, it will be easier for you to get the things you want. Eventually, you will be able to stay happy all the time, even in the most difficult of circumstances. If it’s happening to me, it can happen to you too.
By meditating, we create an inner space and clarity that makes us control our mind regardless of the external circumstances. Gradually, mental equilibrium can be attained, which is a balanced state of consciousness. If we train in meditation, we can eventually eradicate the causes of all our suffering. This way, we will come to experience a permanent kind of inner peace. When there is inner peace, we are able to open ourselves up to our inner and hidden psychic abilities. Why do you think I tend to always attract good things in my life? Because of the power of meditation. And on those days when I forget to meditate, my day turns out not-so-great. So meditation is really a must in our day-to-day life if we want to live a fulfilling life brimming with blessings and glee!
LEARNING FROM MY MEDITATION RETREAT
Below, I want to share with you my favorite quotes and teachings from the seminars I attended presided by Buddhist monks during my 2-week meditation retreat in Taiwan. I want to share them here with you as you might also find them inspirational.
“No one can help solve the depression within your heart. The only solution is to understand the heart of your depression. Only this way can you let go of your problems. Your environment and those in it is ever-changing. Are you affected by these changes? Are you vexed when things don’t go your way?”
I think my attachment to what I want or what I think I want is the thing that caused my depression in the past especially when things didn’t happen my way. The key is to detach myself from my desires and to live in the moment, go with the flow and just be grateful for whatever comes my way. Thanks to bebe Hanz, I’ve furthered my practice on this.
“Views after ENLIGHTENMENT:
1. To be in a difficult situation, yet not feel difficulty.
2. To be in confusion, yet not be confused.
3. To be delusion, yet not be deluded.
4. To be in difference, but not be prejudiced.
Therefore, the real realization in Ch’an is “Perceiving Suchness.”
Again, to accept the situation as is but to not get too attached to these negative states. Like yesterday, we were in Villa Escudero. We planned for this for so long and I tasked bebe Hanz to do the research for us. I was counting on him to have all the details for our family trip. When we got there, it was so much fun at first with the man-made waterfall and being able to have lunch there with baby Tuz in tow. But when we discovered later on that there’s a huge swimming pool for adults and kids there and I did not bring any of my swimsuits with me because I wasn’t expecting that there was a pool because bebe Hanz didn’t find out about it when he was reading blog posts about the place, I felt bad and got teary-eyed the whole afternoon. It’s a small thing to feel bad about but I did feel bad. Good thing I was able to let go of it as soon as I felt it and we were able to enjoy the rest of the afternoon. Come evening, I had to tell bebe Hanz how I really felt about it so I can fully let go of it. I accepted the situation for what it was and I did not get too attached to the negative feelings I felt.
“How to practice contemplation in everyday life. Four points:
1. Contemplate the self, seek the causes in oneself rather than elsewhere.
2. Update oneself, continuous purification.
3. Rely upon oneself for self-realization, avoid dependence upon others.
4. Free from labeling, avoid contesting with others.”
I learned to focus on making myself better, on understanding myself better and refrain from minding or judging others. This is why I find “chismis” or back biting boring. I don’t engage in such activities and I don’t care much about other people’s negativities. That’s their choice and I choose to be positive instead and just focus on my life and myself. On those rare occasions however when people or circumstances bring me too much negativity for instance, I delete them from my life by blocking them on Facebook or unfriending them for real. Perhaps, when I’ve attained Buddhahood, I can tolerate them more. For now, we only have a short life to live and I want most of it to be happy and stress-free.
“Benefits of Practicing Ch’an (meditative state):
1. Rids the pressures of everyday life.
2. Promotes physical health.
3. Increases tolerance.
4. Experience the joy of Ch’an
5. Not trapped in personal problems
6. Harvest inner wisdom
7. Perceive the pure nature of the mind
8. Attain Buddhahood.”
These are all so true as I’ve already experienced these benefits and I keep experiencing them every time I meditate. I hope you’ve learned something from my meditation post.
I’ll share more when I blog about my Taiwan meditation experience. Til next time!