Meditation is about learning to be fully present. To ‘see’ things as they really are.
Mindfulness, or awareness, is a special way of paying attention moment to moment. It involves being intentional, without getting distracted and accepting whatever our experience is of ourselves and our environment.
Meditation is the primary practice that develops mindfulness. When we meditate, we are training our mind and our heart to be more naturally focused and at ease, in the now.
Meditation helps us on many levels. Mentally it promotes a relaxed focus and clarity of mind. Physically it builds our internal energy. Authentic meditation also develops our self-understanding and our capacity for patience, generosity, love, compassion and forgiveness.
Simple but not easy.
Each of us has the ability to meditate and to be mindful, however at first it is not easy. This is because we have trained ourselves to ‘forget ourselves’. We are busy, multi-task and easily get distracted away from what matters the most. Plus, our usual way of ‘paying attention’ tends to be superficial and transient. This is fine if we genuinely need to be on danger-alert but not if we’d like to feel a lasting sense of calm about ourselves and our life.
The ability to be mindful plays an incredibly important role. It can make the difference between feeling stressed or at ease, being connected or disconnected, being fearful or courageous and staying stuck or healing.
Being present means that we are tuned-in. That we can best experience the richness, opportunities and potential that life offers us, in the moment. It means that we aren’t worried about the future or lamenting about the past. It means that we can fully listen to the person in front of us, that we can access our full creativity and intellectual power when we choose to – and that we can be more accepting of ourselves and of our situation.
If we live in a constant state of mental distraction, without being mindful, then we’re more likely to get frustrated, feel exhausted and have the sense that there’s never enough time – even that life is passing us by. Overuse of our mind, without tuning-in to our heart, impacts negatively on our health, our relationships, reduces our performance and limits our capacity to release stress and to heal.
The practice of meditation allows you to break this cycle and potentially, to change your life.
Meditation helps us on many levels – it can help you to:
- defuse stress and experience greater calm
- explore the mind-body relationship
- connect to your feelings
- expand your sense of who you truly are, beyond your fears and self-judgment
- find genuine happiness
- discover your inner resources and creativity
- awaken your capacity for insight and wisdom
- transform your worldview from one of isolation and confusion to one of connection, clarity and compassion
- broaden your perspective and deepen your courage, based on seeing things just as they are.
(Reference: Insight Meditation Society www.dharma.org)
History and teachings.
There are many different meditation traditions, forms and practices.
At Momentum, we teach authentic mindfulness meditative practices from both the Yoga and Buddhist traditions. This includes – breath awareness (known as anapanasati), insight (vipassana), loving-kindness (metta) and mantra meditations. Whilst the practices themselves are ancient, they are timeless. They are as relevant today as they were thousands of years ago during the time of the Buddha himself.
Although meditation is at the heart of many religions and spiritual traditions, a spiritual inclination is not required to learn meditation. To want to be a more relaxed, happier and better person are excellent motivations for learning to meditate. We welcome anyone that is sincere about learning and practicing meditation.
What to expect.
We approach teaching meditation in a friendly, supportive way, within a modern context – that’s relevant to everyday men and women living and working in a busy world, who want to better themselves personally and/or professionally.
In our meditation classes, courses and private sessions, you will learn simple techniques to train your attention inwards and allow you to observe and feel what’s going on. You will also be guided and supported to overcome any obstacles you face in your meditation practice, as well as tips for making lifestyle changes that best support meditation and a mindful approach to life.
Over time as your meditation practice develops, you begin to ‘see’ what you would normally miss – and this can be surprising. As you learn to relax more deeply into each moment, developing wisdom and clarity, you’ll likely gain a sharper perspective on reality, both inwardly and outwardly, and this has a very positive impact for most people.
With regular practice over years, meditation takes us from confusion to clarity, from distraction to stillness and from suffering to freedom. Ultimately we experience ourselves not as crazy and chaotic, but as peaceful presence, as naturally loving and content. As who we really are.
Ready to dive in?
We’d love to help you meditate! If you are completely new to meditation, just getting started or would like to understand more about mindfulness, we recommend our Foundations of Meditation & Mindfulnes Course . These courses run throughout the year, but they’re popular and do fill-up, so book your place early.
We look forward to welcoming you to meditation at Momentum.