Even though I have been teaching meditation for over 30 years, I continue to learn from my yoga teachers. This time my yoga teacher was my son, Luke, who was at The Center this past weekend for our 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training program. He teaches in The Center’s program two times each series.
Well, this time Luke lead the students in a practice of stillness. Stillness is the first step in developing a meditation practice. It was very similar to the popular Buddhist meditation practice of Vipassana.
He asked us to sit as comfortably as we could with our backs as straight as possible, then to close our eyes. Immediately, we are drawn inside. Immediately, we become aware of our internal world and set aside for the time being all the hustle and bustle of the outside world. Immediately, we forget the worries, the hassles, the plans, the expectations of life and become aware of how our body feels.
We notice how comfortable our body is and adjust it to make it more comfortable. Our mind travels around on the inside of us and starts to make adjustments in our posture or our hand positions or our place on the chair or the floor.
Then our mind, if we continue to keep our eyes closed notices our breathing, as it comes in and out of our nose. We notice how comfortable it is and how it moves through the body. After staying with that breath movement in the body, we begin to experience the breath getting deeper, moving from our upper chest to our lower chest. We are starting to establish deep diaphragmatic breathing, even becoming aware of thee movement of our lower ribs out as we inhale and in as we exhale.
This diaphragmatic breath then pushes our internal searching mind to notice that our bodily muscles are starting to let go of tension. Our mind seems to automatically move through the body releasing tension in the head, face, shoulders, the arms, the hands, chest, hips and legs. We start to experience stillness throughout the entire body.
We start to rest DEEPLY without even trying to relax.
That DEEP REST is a stillness that comes from our core self, the divinity that lies deep within. Our mind glimpses it for a few brief moments.
We all need to experience this deep stillness at least once a day. It only took us 5 minutes or so. It wasn’t a technique. It was just closing our eyes and letting our breath and our spirit lead our mind to that moment which everyone of us needs and longs for—STILLNESS FROM THE MADNESS OF LIFE!