A Beginner’s Meditation Practice

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“It does not matter how long you are spending on the earth, how much money you have gathered or how much attention you have received. It is the amount of positive vibration you have radiated in life that matters.” ― Amit Ray

I suppose it’s a little unusual to hear that a person meditates, depending on who you hang out with and assuming most of these people are not monks. In fact, until a few months ago I didn’t meditate or know anyone who did. Or at least anyone who talked about it.

But then the load of the world and all the radical problems in it that felt absolutely oppressive to me started to weigh in on my spirit. They were not troubles of the sort I had ever known before. This wave of chaos felt overpowering and mighty, damn near suffocating.

Some may call it a “mid life thing” though I’m only 35. I would be ok with that except that it conjures up ideas that perhaps I want to blow my 401k on a sleek sports car and run off with a younger man. I do not wish, in any way, to do either of these things. And I don’t believe I am in the middle of my life. I do believe I’m on the verge of a transformed life, however.

I’d like to call it an awakening. I don’t know how else to describe it in a way that does it justice. An awakening of my mind to what really matters, my heart to what Love is, and my spirit to the infinite power within to heal, forgive and grow. It’s actually really groovy. And I’m not sure if it’s because I am sending out positive vibes or happen to be attracting like minded individuals, but it feels like this concept of “waking up” is extremely pervasive these days.

On some level, we all seek peace. Practicing stillness allows peace to settle in with me.

The trick is to keep in connection with this newly emerging inner spirit. Because it’s lovely to wake up, so to speak, to the truth of what it means to be loving, powerful, grateful and content but almost immediately the ego threatens to tear it all apart. In a world that seems to chant more, more, more, it can be maddeningly difficult to stay true to your soul that’s whispering “be still, let go, just breathe.”

In meditation, I’m learning to be deliberately very still. It’s called a practice because it’s sometimes quite hard to do! Even once you get it, you still have to keep at it regularly to be able to keep doing it. Wildly enough though, it’s addictive in a very cool way. The peace within is the greatest peace there is. The power in calm is tremendous and cleansing.

I practice my meditations in a space in my home. Then, I go out and live in the same world I lived in the day before with all of it’s pressures, jealousy, and greed. But I don’t see things in the same way anymore. Now I see these things for what they really are: projections of fear. And I know that within myself I can access the expansive power of love instead. Having this knowledge saves me from a lot of pain. And if I did not practice meditation everyday, the connection to this inner peace would be fuzzy at best, broken at worst.

A New Level of Knowledge

This is why I meditate. Because I may or may not be mid-life but I am at a place in my life where I’m certain that the problems created by an egocentric lifestyle cannot be solved with the same level of knowledge I used to create them. I believe it’s time to seek a new level of knowledge. A knowledge that can only come from surrendering my plans and purpose to a higher, deeper, more conscious truth.

I am not a devoutly religious person. I do not attend church because it doesn’t feel quite right for me. Still, I am a curious and passionately spiritual person. In my very bones I am sure there is a spirit within. Call it whatever feels true, the naming of this loving power is not nearly as important as discovering it’s force. It’s the spirit of everything that truly matters, of forgiveness, gratitude, peace and love.

I’ve heard people say they can access this inner spirit through creating art, exploring nature, surfing, praying, practicing yoga, keeping a gratitude journal, or any number of other practices that focuses the mind on the present moment. Anything that allows you to forgive your past, let go of the future, and just be present.

For me, it’s meditating. And I would encourage you to give it a try for yourself. I simply added a station to my Pandora called Calm Meditation Radio. Sometimes I use mantras and sometimes I focus on getting to that place beyond thought to just silence. Here are some simple mantras I picked up from Gabrielle Bernstein’s guidebook May Cause Miracles:

~ I am willing to see love instead of fear.

~ I am willing to let go of my self doubt.

~ Today I commit to miraculous shifts.

Meditation is not for everyone and that’s ok. I just wouldn’t want you not to try it because no one you know talks about it.

I love talking about it.

Peace, always.

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xxx

17 thoughts on “A Beginner’s Meditation Practice

    1. longandluxe Post author

      Hello dear Looking Glass,

      So great to hear from you! Meditation is freeing indeed and even five minutes a day can allow enough space for that awesome peace to come in. Fair warning – it will transform your life! :)

      Wishing you a peaceful Sunday ~

      Allison

      Reply
        1. longandluxe Post author

          I wish you a very sacred quiet space to connect to the creative spirit within! Don’t worry, little by little you will find it is a most lovely gift to give yourself :) Take it slow and always remember you can call on peace any time you wish – it will find you.

          And if you ever need encouragement please feel free to reach out!

          Enjoy the stillness ~ Allison

          Reply
  1. Mike Pratt

    Allison, reading this really made my day!! What else made my day? Seeing your new portrait! :)

    Meditation, in its many forms, is truly a wonderful and rewarding practice. I’ve been attempting to meditate on and off for a couple of years now, with varying levels of success. One only needs to meditate for a few minutes to feel the benefits of a cleansed mind and renewed vigor.

    Letting go of the stresses that cause mental and physical anguish is not only healthy on a personal level, it is beneficial to others around us. Meditation can be of great assistance in attempting to lead a comfortable stress-free life. Of course, by continuing to cling to greed, fame, a self-centered attitude among other traits that seem to define humanity these days, meditation can be difficult. Knowing our faults and admitting to them is a great way to allow meditation to flow smoothly into our lives.

    I believe if the majority of people spent just a few minutes / day meditating and understanding / realizing what is truly important, we would see a gradual shift towards peacefulness instead of the anger demonstrated daily, around the world.

    Always, Allison, you encourage with your words :) Keep pushing forward and meditating!

    Reply
    1. longandluxe Post author

      My dear Mike,

      Your words are so kind and light me up inside! I am thrilled that you enjoyed this post! I agree with everything you say, everything. Quieting the mind and connecting to our inner source of power and love is one of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves, and just as you say, it is a gift to those around us. I’ve found myself to be more centered, calm, and forgiving. Knowing that I can access inner peace at any time is such a relief and a rich blessing.

      It can be tough, truly, to let go of all the ego has to beat us up about and all the awful hurt going on in the world. When you get silent and just breathe, sometimes difficult emotions have to come forth. I’m starting to learn to let them come and let them pass.On a really good day, the groovy love vibes are enough to transform my soul and even my physical experience. It’s amazing. And like you, I believe we can change the world – one awakened spirit at a time.

      That’s why I’m so glad that readers are cool with me talking about it. And I must thank you very humbly for your kind mention of my portrait. Coming from an outstandingly gifted photographer such as you are, it is a lovely compliment. It feels really good to be me more freely :)

      Wishing you peace and extending my gratitude,

      ~ Allison

      Reply
    1. longandluxe Post author

      Dear Kelly,

      You and I share a wavelength – and it’s always a groovy one! :) Love it. Love that you meditate! Isn’t it such a gift. The gift of touching that inner peace, it’s beyond words. It is the truth of divinity. I’m hooked :)

      And thank you so humbly for liking my icon. I took a big long deep breath before being able to do it!!! When you are ready, you will know. When you do it mindfully, it’s freeing. You will appreciate this mantra, my friend in Brene Brown ~ I just said to myself “I am imperfect and I am enough” ~~ Rock it out, love!

      Peace, always ~

      Allison

      Reply
  2. The Fashion Huntress

    So cool- thank you for sharing. I think meditation is not talked about enough in the US! We are very “western” focused in terms of helping people feel better and good about themselves- I think practices such as mediation are so useful and helpful. I keep hoping they catch on here more one day.

    Reply
    1. longandluxe Post author

      Dearest Huntress,

      YES!!!! 1000%!! I promise you, I will do everything I know how to spread the word about this. Within each of us lies an infinite amount of love, peace, light and creativity. One person at a time can heal the deepest hurts and pains of this world.

      Thank you so much for your comment. I know you have such experience with what people go through in terms of turmoil in their lives. I truly value your comment on this :)

      Peace ~ Allison

      Reply

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