The Dummy Meditator

Years ago as an adult in my forties, I was looking for a meditation teacher. I had meditated as a teenager doing Transcendental Meditation, but now I was looking for something a bit different.

I was regularly doing yoga at that time and was exposed to a number of options. I began to take a few evening and Saturday workshops. I waited after one class to speak to one of the instructors who had taught meditation. He explained that not every student was ready for his teaching (apparently I was part of that group) and suggested instead that I get a copy of Meditation for Dummies by Stephen Bodian.

Being the seeker I was, I did pick up a copy. While aware of the slight, I was determined to learn anything I could from the book. It was accessible, easy to read and contained many exercises associated with quite a few schools of meditation. I earnestly explored several of them. As I had done some mantra meditation previously, I gravitated to a few of those exercises. Ultimately, I settled on one mantra I had not heard of before.

The mantra was simple and an english phrase, “There is only Love”. Simple and powerful. A statement that resonated when I spoke it silently. An affirmation. It became one of my go to’s along with some of the more common and traditional mantras when I woke up at two or three a.m. It was great to have another tool in my tool box. Eventually, I did find my teacher. My work with him was everything I had hoped it would be plus a lot of work.

Now after decades of a fulfilling meditation practice, my takeaway was and is that meditation finds a way. It cannot be forced and it cannot be rushed. If one does not feel that call, and not everyone does, it is likely too big a lift to take on. But note, meditation’s beckoning might be a whisper or a curious feeling or something more dramatic, but when it calls, it calls….


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