The beauty of taking time for meditation and stillness is that it gives us an opportunity to experience ourselves as something other than a habitual being reacting, clutching, voting on, or chewing over every thought that passes through our minds. It’s an opportunity to experience a deeper, larger, more aware consciousness that is beyond thought.
It’s there in all of us but we rarely get to experience this deep consciousness because we are so caught up, fascinated, often enamored with the thoughts that stream though our brain, one right after the other taking up our time and energy.
It is estimated that we think some 70,000 thoughts per day. Most of these thoughts are not worth paying attention to or following. The Buddhists call this Monkey Mind – the thoughts that busy our minds with worry, want, desire, regret, concern, fear of rejection, replaying of something that happened in the past, planning for the future.
There is a time to plan for the future, but when we spend all of our time in any of these states of mind, we completely miss the present moment. The present moment is really all we have.
The present moment is full of sensory delights:
- sounds of nature such as bird songs, the crunch of leaves beneath our feet, rain on our roof
- smells such as wood burning in a nearby fireplace, fresh bread from the oven, pine sap from the evergreen
- touches like the feel of wind in our face, warm sun on our skin, and moonlight in our eyes
- the taste of salt in the ocean breeze, spicy food, sweet fruits
There is so much to take in right here, right now—no naming, conceiving, analyzing, discriminating is necessary—we can just be and be aware.
“Knowing yourself as the awareness behind the voice is freedom.”
Take the time to experience yourself this way; to cease the incessant urge to be constantly doing or thinking, and give yourself the delicious gift to be.