What is meditation?

‘’Meditation, isn’t that thinking about nothing? I can’t think about nothing because it is so busy in my head!’’

Unfortunately the misunderstanding that meditation is ‘the art of thinking about nothing’ is very widespread, making many people feel that meditation is simply impossible and only useful for monks or people living in the mountains. Meditation can more accurately be described as

‘the art of being with what is’.

This is a slight difference in attitude yet it can make all the difference in the practice of meditation and life in general. In the first mindset nothing will ever be good enough while in the second mindset the idea of good or bad is not important at all. When you practice meditation, you will find that there comes a space in the mind:

space to open the mind, relax and see everything as it really is instead of how you think everything is.

A mind full of thoughts is a mind that cannot see much beyond its own thoughts, while an open and relaxed mind is able to understand much more!

So how can sitting still and watching your breath contribute to creating this kind of mindset?

In meditation we bring our awareness from the outside world into the inner world. We stop distracting ourselves for a while with external things and simply sit down to be with ourselves as we are. We are often mostly (or completely) preoccupied with our external world through things like physical appearance, socializing, various forms of entertainment or work. However, it is at least as important to pay careful attention to our inner world because

through the inner world we experience everything around us.

That might sound a bit vague but a clear example of this is that when we wake up in a bad mood or when something frustrates us we experience everything in a negative way, while when we feel amazing or just had good news nothing seems to be able to bother us!

Every human is full of thoughts: some big, some small, some horrible, some inspiring, some created by pain, some made by love. But we are not our thoughts even though they are often so dominating in our daily lives. Meditation calms these ever-moving thoughts and brings some control back to the one who is having the thoughts: you!

Meditation has the power to make you more conscious of yourself and make you calm and balanced regardless of external circumstances.

The art of meditation is such a powerful thing because it allows us to turn inside ourselves to meet ourselves instead of looking for who we are in the external world. In meditation we turn our attention inward and focus on relaxing the body and breathing deeply. The thoughts we have all the time are not so important in this process and we continually choose to focus on our breathing instead of constant and compulsive thinking.

It also helps you to be more focused and to improve your concentration. Through meditation you also learn how to breathe properly, which also has a relaxing effect on the body and mind. It is useful for everyone, for example: people who wish to work more effectively or anyone seeking spiritual growth.

Meditation in Harmónia Tai Chi Retreat

The Harmónia Tai Chi Retreat provides meditation as one of the main activities. Although the practice of meditation is very personal, having the right environment and guidance can be a great benefit. The Harmónia Tai Chi Retreat provides an

instructor with a lot of experience in practicing and teaching meditation and a beautiful natural environment

for you to practice in. Besides regular meditation we practice different kinds of Qigong (Daoist) meditation. For more information about Qigong and how it relates to meditation please press here.