We have all heard that its good to meditate, but do you know why? If you are convinced by the scientific facts behind meditation chances are you are more likely to dedicate consistent time towards the practice. Let’s start with a reflection, are you truly happy? Would your life to be more joyful and peaceful?
In the modern day, we are plagued with the notion that more is better. That if we emulate a certain lifestyle, acquire certain possessions, embody a certain fashion it will lead us to happiness. Living in a fast-paced city of Hong Kong, with a sensory overload of stimulus and advertisements we are bombarded with a value that we need ‘x’ to feel better. That somehow right now, as we are, we are not enough. This sense of unworthiness is deep-rooted in our society, take a look at the rising rates of anxiety and suicide amidst the climb in the standard of living, the amenities, the healthcare, the education, the availability of food and water. With more the basic needs provided, how are we still unhappy? The consumerist attitude is always outward looking, its fueled by greed and insecurity so no amount would ever be enough. The insatiable appetite of our desires means we are always left wanting more, dissatisfied with our current circumstance.
It has been widely documented that there is more happiness derived when people purchase experiences that things. Seeking a sense of fulfillment an experience can bring us back to the present, but have you noticed how fleeting retail therapy can be? To break free from the cycle of lack from consumerism, it’s time to simplify. Connect to things, people, experiences that bring you joy and cut out all the noise of everything else. Relieve yourself of the need to always be busy, with engagements, social obligations, and meetings, simplify your time and prioritize your tasks in what brings you happiness and contentment.
Take the time to consider the quality of your inner environment. What frame of mind do you operate from? Are you consumed by the negative? Are you your own biggest critic or biggest supported? We have the power to choose our thoughts, our thoughts determine our emotional charge, our emotions determine physiological reactions and our biological experiences become our reality. To change the way you are being it starts with your mind.
Let’s examine the mind in a bit more detail, it can be categorized into 2 parts- conscious and subconscious. Conscious thought it all the rational thinking and learning takes place. Do you know what determined your behavior? Do you always do what you think is right? Most of the time we feel governed by our actions, by our habits, by our reactions from a much deeper place- this is the subconscious with attests to controlling 95% of our behaviors. To make a real change in who we are it is great to understand, but if that learning isn’t practiced it just becomes intellectualized philosophy. To reprogram ourselves to unblock where we are stuck, permanently solve our problems and attain the life we dream of we need to access the operating system, the subconscious mind, through meditation. Meditation allows us to consciously dive into slower and slower brainwaves. We operate at beta waves- this is the analytical mind, the constant mental rumination, the stress responses, the feeling of lack and unworthiness all operated from this capacity, as they are constantly in action seeking a certain reaction from the outside world to bring us happiness. Once we transcend the analytical mind we are in alpha brainwaves this is that half awake half asleep state, just before you go to sleep, or if you go into a daze while driving you are consciously operating your car but on a mental level your thoughts are somewhere else. In meditation, we access this place as it is the confluence of the conscious and subconscious mind. Theta brain waves are when you have arrived at the subconscious mind, you may experience yourself being aware that you are nodding off but you are physically awake- this is theta and comes with repeated practice of meditation and deep relaxation.
When you sit for meditation, keep a long spine and have your body relaxed. Then come to be aware of the present moment, your physical presence, the sounds around you closely listening to the sound of your breath and your heartbeat. Then deepen your awareness in feeling the space that you are occupying, your energetic field, feel this start to expand, feel the space in the room you are in and let your energy expand with your awareness. Set a vibrational frequency of love with your awareness, spreading love to your entire being, your inner workings, your outer surroundings. Love is the infinite healer when you come from a place of love you will see magic transpire in your life. The feeling of love centered at your heart, Anahata chakra, will eradicate the root of your problems, the ego, the idea that we are alone, incomplete, unloved and need to gain from the outside world for a sense of worthiness.
Yoga is a system of transcendence to increase physical awareness to then deepen in breathing and meditation being aware of your resting rhythms and then connect the substratum of love and silence within each of us. Yoga classes provide a step by step ascension into freeing the tension in our bodies so that we can sit with ease, then deep mindfulness of our inner dialogue and the importance for a positive frame of mind and then finally to transcend the analytical mind into the subconscious to seed love and fulfillment. When we operate from this place our behavior and results are all geared to give us the life we dream of, the life abundant with happiness.