When we talk about meditation in terms of letting go of thoughts, it can seem as if it is a matter of setting oneself up as an observer of one’s mind and to root out thinking. This is a misunderstanding of the whole process. Setting up a watcher in this way perpetuates our false sense of what we are and what our experience is. The observer might well be well intentioned, but the problem is that it is heavy-handed and believes too much in itself. Continue reading Meditation: Recognising ‘the watcher’ as thinking too
“If you try too hard to let go of thinking, the mind speeds up and more thoughts than ever seem to come up. If you don’t try hard enough it’s business as usual. Nothing changes and you discover nothing of interest. So it’s a matter of getting the right touch. One way of doing this is to adopt toward thoughts an attitude you would have … Continue reading Getting the right touch with meditation: welcoming thoughts as guests
Lama Shenpen answers a question on meditation from a teaching given in 2014. What’s really going on when we feel our meditation isn’t working? Is it really ‘not working’? How should we reflect on this, what insight might we be missing? Continue reading Video: What’s really going on when we feel our meditation isn’t working?
“The tendency is to think ‘I shouldn’t be thinking, I should be staying with the breath…” In a teaching from 2014 Lama Shenpen points out how to work with our thoughts during meditation and why thoughts aren’t a problem. Continue reading Video: Working with thoughts in meditation
It often seems that we are back at square one but that is because reality is right here in every experience. It is like a gate. We keep stepping in and out. When we are in a good space it seems like that is all there is and always will be and when we step out it seems like to get back into the space is a huge effort. Continue reading Student’s Question: Why does my meditation practice feel like I’m starting from the beginning again?
Just wake up and look. Where are they? What are they? Who told them to come? Who told them to go? Just look straight at them – how long do they last? How many of them are there? What is the sound of their voices? This kind of direct looking is what meditation at its best is. Continue reading A Student’s Question: How can we work with judgemental voices during meditation?
Can we make friends with our anxiety? Is this having confidence in our meditation practice? “For us confidence would consist of acknowledging our fear and anxiety and turning towards them rather than panicking and trying to run away from our feeling, pretending it’s not there or desperately trying to change it into something else that we think we should be feeling.” Continue reading Student’s Question: Is confidence being able to acknowledge anxiety and make friends with it?