Using Meditation to Find Your Inner Self
In order to be “the right one”, rather than looking for completion outside ourselves, we must be in touch with our inner selves. However, during most of the day, our focus is on the outer, the daily routine of our lives, and our minds are concerned with working, solving problems, shopping and running errands. The chaos and noise of the outer world and our active minds distract us from being in touch with our inner selves.
Over the years, I have learned to integrate my spiritual and material lives so that, for the most part, I am at least marginally in touch with my center most of the time. As problems arise, I stop and turn inward for a moment, observe and evaluate my options. It has taken many years to reach this point and the practice that has made this possible is meditation. Years ago when most of my friends practiced Transcendental Meditation, I was drawn to Buddhism and began the sitting practice of zazen. Now I’ve created my own version of a meditative practice. It doesn’t matter what form of meditation we use. Any form will put us more in touch with our spiritual selves.
Meditation Takes Us Beyond Ego
Perhaps the most valuable aspect of meditation is that it takes us beyond our egos. When we are caught up in the turmoil or pressure of everyday life, our egos are often fully engaged. We are concerned with how we do our jobs or who will get the promotion or be laid off. Parents worry about their skills as parents. Are they doing the right thing about their children’s problems? Why is this friend or partner being distant? Don’t they like us anymore? Did we do something wrong?
As Eckhart Tolle points out in A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose, “…almost everyone carries in his or her energy field an accumulation of old emotional pain, which I call ‘the pain-body.” (p. 140) He goes on to explain how negative emotions feed the pain-body and make the ego more powerful. The only way to combat this is to be present so our egos don’t control us. With regular meditative practice, we can be present, an observer in our own lives, operating from our peaceful center and unobstructed by the needs of the ego.
Meditation Supports Spiritual Awakening
Meditation takes us to a place deeper than ego where we are able to release our attachments to the concerns of the day and our emotional pain. This place is sweetly quiet, a place empty of conflict where we learn to observe our thoughts and emotions and release them without judging or attaching to them. In this holy place within, we become an empty vessel and create a space where Spirit can visit and provide us with deeper insights. In this peaceful place, all is well and joy flourishes.
Once we are able to find this peaceful center and commit to experiencing it on a regular basis, the inner balance this creates spills over into our daily lives. We learn to identify those moments when we are about to turn an incident into a major drama and are able to choose not to. We notice that we are being caught up in the fear that something negative might happen, and we choose instead to envision the event turning out positively. Instead of panicking because we don’t know how to solve a problem, we are able to sit quietly and wait for the mind to clear.
Knowing we can choose to experience our challenges with a positive or neutral attitude gives us more power over our lives. Knowing we have a center that is peaceful and connects us with the Infinite Mind gives us a beautiful security. In this place of inner joy, we are healthy, whole, and complete. Having access to our inner selves, we know we will always have the capacity to be “the right one” in our own lives. © 2011 Georganne Spruce