To understand the immeasurable, the mind must be extraordinarily quiet, still.

Jiddu Krishnamurti

To talk anything about meditation on this platform would be like teaching cricket to Sachin Tendulkar. So I am NOT going to do that. All that I am sharing here is my own meditation journey, and I am yet to start, actually.

So I have known about meditation for a while. I used to see Dad in the ‘quiet and pensive‘ pose very often while growing up. All that we (me and my elder sister), knew was that we were not supposed to make any noise or call him out when he was in the meditation pose. We were like.. ok.. that’s simple enough.

All through my adult life, I have generally shied away from even trying meditation, not even once giving it a serious shot. I did try and get into a quiet and pensive mode once a while after few of the yoga sessions I had 7-8 years back (yeah, I had not even done Yoga till then). 

Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless – like water. Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup, you put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, you put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.

Bruce Lee

A few years back, when I would be visiting my parents in Coimbatore over the weekend, they would request me to take them to a centre nearby on Sunday morning, where they had their meditation meetups. I would be happy to drop them and then pick them up after an hour. 

Its only in 2019, that I decided to give Meditation a serious shot. I was fortunate that a friend of mine gave me a pirated version of a 21 day course of Deepak Chopra, which involved 15 mins talk to help meditate. I immediately liked it. I loved that someone was guiding me all the way and telling what to do (and what not to do!).

Subsequently, once I was done with the course, I was not enchanted about doing it all over again. So I resorted to some of the free tools on cure.fit app. They had 5, 10, 15 and 30 min meditation sessions with good talk to accompany the sessions. Its interesting to mention here, I was being told to have a control of my thoughts. I was super conscious of this point. To the extent, that I would make a mental note, of no. of distractions I had in a 10 minute meditation!! So on Monday, if i had 10 distractions, then my target on Tuesday was to manage with 9 or less !! This went on for a good 2-3 weeks. When a good samaritan pointed out: That its ok if mind distracts.. I was like, oh, that’s allowed? But rules mein to nahin likha aisa !!!.

My next attempt was to mediate with music instead of talk. It was to reduce the effort of listening and spend more time in internal churning of the mind.

Last year, during the lockdown, I was with my parents  and they could not go to the centre to meditate, so they started meditating at home. Seeing them in that pensive relaxed state for 45 mins or so, made me get serious about mediation again.

Call it legacy of carrying it forward or what, but after Dad passed away, I took up three practice sessions with a practitioner. They were quite effective. I forgot to count the distractions!!

I did continue the practice of giving company to my mother for Sunday meditations after that for about 3 months. But stopped it at some point as it would clash with my long run plans on Sunday.

Now, I am trying to claw back on the habit. I mediate for 15-20 mins after my morning workouts. It gives lot of comfort after a demanding fitness workout.

But the bottomline is, I still undermine the importance of Meditation. Even after writing articles on importance of meditation, After having  forwarded the same Deepak Chopra course to at least 7 other friends (big dent in their sales revenue !!), all of whom have sworn by it after that, I tend to live in the ‘overconfidence’ zone, that mediation is needed only when you are NOT able to manage yourself well. 

The intent of this post is to be humble enough and admit my shortcoming, so I am even more about the fact that its an area which I need to work on, again, and again, and again.

In the same way that rain breaks into a house with a bad roof, desire breaks into the mind that has not been practicing meditation.

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Hetal Sonpal

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