Escapism vs Real Life

6 minutes
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Okay, and now let's just talk quickly about using meditation as a kind of escape from the stresses of life, versus trying to use meditation as a way to improve your life. Because in the way I teach it in particular, I'm putting a real emphasis on using meditation to understand your mind, especially in times of stress and anxiety in difficult situations. One of the reasons people often come to meditation classes, weekly meditation classes, as they say, you know, it's fantastic to have a space that you can come to where you can feel relaxed and be in the company of like minded people, and escape the sort of rigors of the stress of being at work or family etc. There's nothing wrong with that, you know, that's really great. It's great to have that retreat time, so to speak, however, for meditation remains just that, you can get a little bit one sided, in that there's meditation, which is, you know, you meditate, and that's the peaceful part.

And then there's life, which is the stressful part. And so you flip from one to the other. But where meditation is truly useful is where you start to integrate that whole meditation and understanding of the mind, even in your daily life. So when you're dealing with a difficult person at the bank, or you're dealing, you've just got a bill which you can't pay or something like that. And it's putting that stress on you that even in that time, this calm mind can kick in and help you see things rationally that sort of thing. So in my meditations on Trying to think as much as distractions come up in your meditation, it's important to realize that these are kind of like mini practice sessions.

So as you get distracted on the thought of everyday life is a great opportunity for you to react in your meditation to begin with, with a sense of equanimity and tranquility to that event, or at least lessen the negative emotions that you have. And through this practice, you'll find that in daily life, you will react better to life situations when they throw you a curveball, that sort of thing. And likewise, you remember during the day to try to keep up that sort of meditative state of mind throughout the day. So that's a another distinction. And then the final distinction that I would like to make is the distinction between mindfulness and concentration We often consider that the meditative state is a very concentrated state. And this is very, very true.

But it's interesting that concentration is not one of the tools if you like, that the meditator uses, and that is because there's a link between mindfulness and concentration and insight in the constant lack of concentration is a highly distracted mind. Whereas a concentrated mind is one that is free from distractions. And so if you practice meditation and you become better at becoming non distracted, then your mind will naturally become more concentrated. And when you find that the meditation object is more interesting, a little bit of exercise of meditation is more interesting and becomes sort of a higher priority for you than other things in your life. Again, you will become naturally costly tried it. So concentration is really more an outcome of valuing highly what you're doing in the present moment.

As well as not being distracted and not having a distracted mind, rather than a power in and of itself. So when you try to concentrate, the things you're doing is you're telling yourself that this particular thing that you're trying to concentrate on has more value than anything else in life that might distract you at that point in time. So just be aware of that, that don't, you don't necessarily have to try hard at concentrating really, really hard that will come as a natural or a matter of course, as you get better at meditation. So that's it for the kind of theory at this stage in meditation. In our technique teachings, which is the next module that we do, we will actually go even deeper into Talking about what is meditation and what is the mind and how the mind can gradually progress through stages of meditation.

But at this stage that is a good amount for you to know in order to practice the next section, which is how to meditate. Now, I will say that some of this may be a little confusing at this stage. And it is good to relook at these videos once you've had some experience in meditation. So if you're a complete beginner, I suggest you go through the rest of the course. But then when you're finished, come back and re listen to these meditations and you'll be able to pick up a lot more information that will make a lot more sense. Once you have some experience to judge it by if you like.

Good onward and I can't wait to the next meditation on how to sit in meditation.

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