The Mind is a Wonderful Servant,
But a Terrible Master
June 2019 by Agathe Fay
Meditation is scientifically proven to reduce stress, control anxiety, promote mental health, prolong attention span, and much much more. Impressive data that we can all get behind, right? Right! But if you’re like me, personal accounts are much more inspiring, so I’m going to share a little bit about how meditation changed my life.
I started meditating when I was in a pretty dark place. At first I didn’t really get it and there were many many frustrating sessions, yet I kept with it, somehow trusting that there would be a big cinematic moment of enlightenment with bright white light, dancing deities, and maybe even some levitating. There never was. What did happen was much subtler and progressive, arguably more beneficial and definitely more sustainable.
Over time I was able to get myself out of the rut I was in, put an end to a lot of self-destructive behavior, and find the courage and confidence to make some very big life changes that increased the joy in my life substantially. No small feat…Take that scientific data!!!
Meditation, for me, is coming home to my true nature. Discovering what is behind the noise: thoughts, emotions, and stories. Through meditation I have learned so much about how my mind works and thus how to make it work for me. Additionally, It’s helped me to cultivate
greater compassion and equanimity towards myself and others. Taking these qualities into my life has allowed me to respond rather than react and to be more mindful of how I speak, act, and interact. It’s helped me be a more present and conscious friend, sister, daughter, and human being (read: I’ve become less of an a$@hole). What’s more, the payoff of my meditation practice continues to grow with time as I am presented with new ways to incorporate mindfulness into my life.
Meditation has been a process of awakening to myself as well as to the natural law and order of the universe. The nature of life and death, impermanence, and suffering. It’s helped me to really feel the unity and interdependence amongst all living beings and ignite a deep gratitude for all those who make every moment of my life, from the exceptional to the mundane, possible.
I believe the more people meditate, the more peaceful and harmonious our collective existence will be. Jack Kornfield says that meditation is neither a privilege or a luxury, but rather a responsibility, to ourselves and to one another. An opportunity for each of us to understand how to not get caught in greed, anger, hatred, jealousy, and prejudice and instead cultivate love, kindness, and compassion and heal our world. I wholeheartedly agree and am therefore honored to share my experience with the practice to any and all who show interest.
About my Meditation Class at Samadi:
I invite you to sit and watch the functioning of your own mind in a calm and detached manner, so you can gain insight into your own behavior. The goal is awareness, a concentrated, and finely tuned awareness that you can take into all aspects of your life, harnessing the power and opportunity that each moment holds in working towards a greater self-understanding and peacefulness.
We will explore various techniques such as tonglen (giving and receiving), samatha (silent sitting), metta (love and kindness), guided meditations on topics such as compassion, equanimity, impermanence, and interdependence, and analytical meditations on non-attachment and anger.
This class has something to offer all levels of practitioners, whether you’re new to meditation and wondering where to start or you have an established practice and would like to discover some new techniques and benefit from the collective energy of the sangha.
Use your mind to shape your brain for greater happiness, love, and wisdom and connect with the infinite and luminous landscape of your true nature.