The question of why we meditate, was raised at a recent dhamma talk at Blue Lotus Temple. And the responses from the attendees were extremely varied. I instantly became aware that for each person, there may be a different thought process in regard to why we sit on the cushion. And is there a right or wrong answer?
Well, in Buddhist meditation, I think there is a Right Intention in our practice. And this is one of awakening. We meditate to develop wisdom. Which does not mean to sit there and think long and hard about the meaning of life. It means to lovingly observe our minds with patience and acceptance. Learning not to attach to any one thought, feeling or emotion. And as we develop or skilfulness, we begin to understand the delusion of our senses.
Hot, cold, happy, sad, right, wrong, all begin to fall away with our increasing awareness of this reality. Rather than becoming detached, or escaping from this life, we find ourselves more connected and alive.
While much of this may sound like a goal, it is very different in my opinion. Being purposeful in my practice has no goal, only moment by moment intention. And whatever wisdom that I may have developed thus far, has taught me that mediation is good for me. It is extremely helpful in caring for myself, which in turn develops more loving kindness and compassion for the World. Seeing this reality, my motivation and determination to continue my practice are continuously fed. Purposefully, lovingly, and joyfully.
Whatever your purpose of mediation may be, I hope it is one which brings you peace and acceptance. One which opens your heart of compassion towards others, as well as yourself. One with humility and awareness that all living things, living beings, and non-living beings are equally deserving of your loving kindness, compassion and equanimity.
For further reading on Buddhist Meditation, I suggest reading Buddhist Meditation by Francis Story
(The Anagarika Sugatananda).
May you be well, happy and peaceful.