It's simply not true that a person cannot learn to meditate. Meditation is receiving a lot of attention, but there are solid reasons why doctors and spiritual leaders encourage a daily practice of meditation. Meditation can be effective in reducing anxiety, depression or pain and has been as effective as antidepressants. A regular practice of meditation benefits the mind, body and soul. The vision of sitting with legs crossed in a still position is an outdated image. It's also misguided to believe one must meditate for a long period of time. Meditation may be as short as five to ten minutes to begin. Meditation is a gift to yourself, not a punishment.
The early 20th century New Thought spiritual leader Emmet Fox taught in his book “Find and Use Your Inner Power” how easy it is for anyone to learn meditate. Fox believed there was no more powerful form of prayer than meditation. Fox also admitted that many people believed they could not meditate, sighting they were not spiritual or had no mental training to meditate. But contrary to their belief, Fox shared...even the most seemingly material people constantly meditate - only they do not meditate on Divine things. Meditation is open to anyone; it's not reserved for people of a specific belief or faith such as a Hindu or Buddhist - the Divine is reflected in all human beings.
To support his point, Fox presented an example using the topic of baseball, America's pastime. During baseball season a man (or woman) will get up and while getting ready for the day immediately reflect on all the problems and challenges he carried with him from the prior day. Around the breakfast table he may discuss family problems or challenges with his partner, roommate or children. He'll read the newspaper or check his phone/computer/tablet for headlines and then check the sports page. He'll read about his team(s) for five to ten 10 minutes. This man has become so absorbed in what he's reading, now forgetting all about matters, problems or challenges on his mind moments earlier. He's now thinking about players, upcoming opponents, injuries or standings. The time has past and his ready for the next part of his day.
This example of the man losing his thoughts to the subject that captured his thoughts, baseball, was in fact a meditation. He wasn't focused on the divine, but his attention was focused on a single subject. He quieted his mind from his normal stream of thoughts and proceeded to think and be absorbed by the single subject of baseball.
Beginning to learn to meditate requires nothing more than the behavior displayed by this fictitious man, except choose to read a spiritual book, quotations, or inspirations or Bible verses, placing your focus on what you're reading. Give permission to remove yourself from any noise or activity in your surroundings. It's beneficial to select a standard time each day and allow this time as meditation time. Be still in a quiet setting, breathe and focus on what you're reading or listening to; the time can be as short as two to three minutes. Or you may listen to a quiet, meditative CD or guided meditation. Sit in a comfortable chair, close your eyes, feet on the floor and hands resting in your lap and simply breathe and listen. Think about God, think about your spiritual self, think about the Truth of Being in any shape or form. When your mind begins to wonder, simply take your attention back to your breathe and focus on your breathing. You too will then be in meditation and over time and with practice, you will be able to maintain a quieted mind for longer periods of time and begin to experience remarkable results.
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