Monday, August 30, 2010

Contemplative Monday

A lot of people get confused and don't really understand the purpose of meditating or praying.

Matthieu Ricard, in his book 'Why Meditate?: Working with Thoughts and Emotions', says what he thinks meditation is not.

"......meditation is not an attempt to create a blank mind by blocking out thoughts---which is impossible anyway. Nor is it engaging the mind in endless cogitation in an attempt to analyze the past or anticipate the future....."

Also he says what he thinks meditation/prayer could be :

"There is indeed an element of relaxation in meditation, but it is connected with the relief that comes from letting go of hopes and fears, of attachments and the whims of the ego that never stop feeding our inner conflicts."


  1. Jim, I've been sitting here reading that last statement over and over again. I have to admit that I don't get what he is trying to say, Why would you want to let go of all of those things? Aren't they what makes us who we are?

  2. Sitting there looking at ocean would be an easy place to meditate and pray I think....

  3. I've never known how to meditate, but I am a firm believer in the power of prayer. I have been so blessed with answered prayers throughout my life. Giving everything up to God has always helped relieve the stress of whatever problem I deemed worth worrying about. Sometimes it's hard to give it all up to His hands, I am so conditioned to solving problems myself. Do you think prayer is a form of meditating? Many have said so.


  4. Very lovely. I look forward to your Contemplative Mondays a great deal!

  5. I saw a red-tailed hawk soaring above this morning. First I was mad I didn't have my camera. Then I let it go and watched the hawk. I was completely in the moment. That is a form of meditation, I think.--Inger

  6. I like that description, and I do meditate so often...

  7. There are so many 'ways' to meditate.
    Yes, Inger, I believe watching that hawk was meditating.
    That's great Feral Female.
    Prayer is definitely a form of meditating, Liz.
    Louise, the 'letting go' of these is only while one is sitting still and being just in that moment....not worrying about 'stuff' while you praying or meditating. After you are done....then go back to all that stuff....we have to. That stuff is our life.

  8. Your photographs of the sea and sky give me a peace filled break.

  9. Thanks for sharing. I always try blocking out thoughts and wind up frustrated. Perhaps I've been doing it right all along.

  10. I never know what to do when I'm with a group for meditation - I try to focus on my breathing & breathe in clear crisp blue & out black cloudy gunk. Thoughts creep in all the time & I try to push the away.
    I'd love to do more chanting sometime.

  11. I relax and I guess meditate when i am cloud watching...... does that count?

  12. There is no need to go to India or anywhere else to find peace. You will find that deep place of silence right in your room, your garden or even your bathtub.
    Elisabeth Kubler-Ross


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