Thoughts on Meditation for the Fidgety Skeptic
Good morning fellow yogis!
I hope this post has reached you after a restful night's slumber and the segway into your weekend has been a pleasurable one! If any of you out there know me personally, (and maybe you even caught this through my past posts) you know that I am an advocate for continued self education even though the period of formal education has ended for me. That being said, I am a VORACIOUS reader. In 2017 I read a between 15-20 books by the end of summer. Crazy, right?! Pretty normal for over here, but if you REAAAALLY know me, you could also point out the fact that I kind of fell off the book train once summer ended. Just as life runs itself in a cyclical fashion, so do the avenues for my self education. Besides reading, I also love listening to audiobooks, attending online webinars, watching educational videos and listening to podcasts. This post in particular has to do with the latest podcast from the Rich Roll Podcast, where Rich interviews Dan Harris on his life and his book 10% Happier.
For those of you who do not know, Dan Harris is an ABC news correspondent who co-anchors on both Nightline and the weekend edition of Good Morning America. After the attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, Dan was deployed to war zones all over the world to report the news from Iraq, Myanmar, and other countries in the Middle East, back to all of us in the states. He reported all happenings from natural disasters to updates on the war on terrorism. And who's well-being wouldn't be affected by a job as daunting as this? Dan came home with the mental baggage of severe depression, PTSD, followed by self-medication through hard drug use. All of this inside of him eventually erupted in the form of a live, on-air panic attack while reporting headlines on Good Morning America, which was seen by millions of viewers worldwide and can still be seen on YouTube (linked here) if you so wish to see what a panic attic really looks like and to empathize with the poor guy.
Just like the analogy of the lotus flower growing through the murky depths to erupt at the surface as a magnificent flower, Dan used what could have been a moment of complete and utter public embarrassment to continue down the rabbit hole of self-medication, drug use and possibly suicide but instead, he used it to change his life in the most profound way. This very moment led him to make the choice to not only save his life, but to give himself a new life alltogether. This moment led him to find the power of meditation.
If you have some free time and are looking for something good to listen to, I highly recommend listening to this interview (linked here), or even picking up his book 10% Happier. Dan has really made the process of meditating less intimidating and speaks in a way that brings practicality to making it a part of daily life for the average person.
Just a few noteworthy statements made by Mr. Harris in his interview that really hit a note with me:
"A lot of people end up meditation thinking,"Well, that was a good or a bad one". IT DOESN'T MATTER. There is only question to ask yourself at the end of a meditation where you could have been squirming and miserable the whole time, which is "Was I aware of it? Was I mindful of it?" You are not training yourself to be better at putting yourself into a mental bubble bath you're training yourself to learn how to see your own inner chaos clearly, so that it doesn't own you."
“I wasn't aware of the intensity of the non-stop conversation we are having with ourselves all the time, this just chaotic stew of urges and impulses and desires that is your inner life. When you don't see it clearly it owns you and that's all that meditation is… It's a systematic “waking up” to this reality so that you can surf it rather than be drowned by it.”
Again, guys... this podcast interview was well worth the time to listen to. Who knows, maybe it will ignite the flame that lies inside of you to make a change for your own well-being. Sometimes that's all you need.
Ahimsa was not only created to bring you high vibration malas that serve as an accessory vehicle in your journey into meditation and wellness, but also to spread the message of high-vibration states of mind. If you feel as though you are stuck in a dark place, that the voice inside of your head is feeding you negative messages, I strongly suggest looking into meditation. Questions and comments are ALWAYS welcome here. We are building a community around our principals and are here for you, as we are all part of the same consciousness.
Ahimsa and Namaste,