Find Happiness 19: Meditation: Are you Botching it Up?

meditation2-250 Meditation, as popularly conceived, is similar to prayer in a lot of respects. It entails closing your eyes, being in a special location, and performing it during a portion of the day. If you are talking about deep meditation (aka soul-searching), then all those descriptors are appropriate. But should the rest of your day be meditation-free?

No Way!!!

Meditation, if done with the correct attitude, connects you with the rest of the Universe. This connection frequently happens during deep meditation, and over several sessions. The door to the rest of the Universe slowly opens; if you are dedicated enough, have faith in where the meditation is taking you, and are serious about willingly surrendering to the unimaginable power of the Universe, you will have the courage to step into that door.

Once in the door, you will realize that this is your peaceful, blissful home; this is where you live, and from where you have been looking out of the window your whole life, forgetting that you are at home in the first place. Most recently you’ve even been looking out of the window trying to find home 🙂

So once you find your peaceful home, what do you do? Start looking out of the window again because your 15 or so minutes of daily meditation are over? And again forget that you are actually at home? HECK NO!!

happy -beach250 Once you are out of deep, eyes-closed meditation, you have to be ‘at home’ the rest of the time as well. Without your eyes closed, without being on your meditation mat and without withdrawing from routine activities. You should be a motionless witness to all your thoughts and sensations, acting in accordance with what your mind decides. You will do all the things you normally do, only you will be quietly watching your mind and body as they go about their routine tasks. In a way, you will be watching the movie of your life.

The takeaway: Once your sit-down meditation is over, spend every moment of the remaining day in open-eyes meditation.

As my spiritual teacher and very close friend Swami Suddhananda has always said, you should be…

living in meditation.


To your peaceful, enhanced life,

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Find Happiness 4: Your Eyes and Ears Are Like a Rented Video Camera

Video-camera Your eyes and ears are like a rented video camera because after using them for a while to record sights and sounds, you have to “give them back.” 

Trouble is, many of us feel our life is in that ‘video camera’ and that our existence ends when we give it back. That’s not really the case…

Imagine how you will feel at the moment of your death… “I will be cut off forever from my father, mother, partner, siblings, children “… “I will never again see or enjoy my home”… “no more sunrises, birds chirping or interesting food “… “no more love and affection from others”…

…and then, perhaps, you panic. What a way to die!

If you take a broader view of things, you will not have to go through that agonizing situation.


What Is Left after You Return Things

When life is over, we have to return not only our eyes and ears, but also our nose, skin (our whole body, actually) and mind.  Let’s call this collection the ‘super video camera’.

The fact is that there is a basic ‘you’ that remains after returning the super video camera. Of course the question is, what is this basic ‘you’?

Here’s an easy method to catch a glimpse of the basic ‘you’. Close your eyes. What do you see? Black, right? Good. Now realize that there is the black and that there is someone who’s looking at the black. There is a subject and there is an object. The black is the object. You are the subject. You are not the black. You are separate from it. So we’re talking about two things here.

In the same way when a thought occurs in your head, the thought is the object and you are the subject.  Similarly, you are not the sights that you see, or the sounds that you hear, or the smells that you smell or the touches that you feel. Heck, since you can perceive your body, you are not your body either. All are objects, and you are the lone subject.

So what does the basic ‘you’ actually boil down to?

You are that which is aware of the thoughts, sights, sounds, touches, smells and your body. You are awareness. You are not made from matter. You are not physical. You are a ‘spiritual being’, and you, awareness, remain even after the body and mind have been ‘returned’.

Read the last paragraph again and think about it very carefully. Please try and understand it. You are pure awareness, you are not physical, and you remain when the super video camera has been returned.


Make It Real

Do not worry when you have to “return” your body and mind. You still exist when you give them back, just like a renter exists after returning a rented video camera.

Identify with awareness.

Reading those three words is not enough; you have to believe them. I can tell you from experience that the best way to believe is to behave as though you believed. It implies making your decisions based on the fact that you are awareness and not your mind and body. This requires courage, and may you have it in ample measure.


Peace and happiness to you,

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