Meditation is the art of living with yourself. It is nothing else than that, simply that: the art of being joyously alone. A meditator can sit joyously alone for months, for years. He does not hanker for the other, because his own inner ecstasy is so much, is so overpowering, that who bothers about the other?
The meditator develops new depths of insight through direct communication with the reality of the phenomenal world... He or she is able to see not only the absence of complexity, the absence of duality, but the stoneness of stone and the waterness of water. One sees things precisely as they are, not merely in the physical sense, but with awareness of their spiritual significance.
Meditation should not be regarded as a learning process. It should be regarded as an experiencing process. You should not try to learn from meditation but try to feel it. Meditation is an act of nonduality. The technique you are using should not be separate from you; it is you, you are the technique. Meditator and meditation are one. There is no relationship involved.
Once, at a seminar, I heard a Westernized lama say that a meditator's state of mind should be like that of a hotel doorman. A doorman lets the guests in, but he doesn't follow them up to their rooms. He lets them out, but he doesn't walk into the street with them to their next appointment. He greets them all, then lets them go on about their business. Meditation is, in its initial stages, simply accustoming oneself to letting thoughts come and go without grasping at their sleeves or putting up a velvet rope to keep them out.
Marc Ian Barasch
Meditation is enjoying oneself, just sitting silently doing nothing: happy, joyous without any reason, because all reasons come from outside. You meet a beautiful woman and you are happy, or you meet a beautiful man and you are happy - but the meditator is simply happy. His happiness has no reason from the outside world; his happiness wells up within himself.
If you are a meditator, as your meditation goes on becoming more and more luminous, your intelligence will be growing to the last breath of your life. Not only that, even after the last breath your intelligence will continue to grow - because you are not going to die, only your body will be dying. And the body has nothing to do with intelligence, mind has nothing to do with intelligence. Intelligence is the quality of your awareness - more aware, more intelligent. And if you are totally aware, you are as intelligent as this whole existence is.
A meditator cannot smoke, for the simple reason that he never feels nervous, in anxiety, in tension. Smoking helps - on a momentary basis - to forget about your anxieties, your tensions, your nervousness. Other things can do the same - chewing gum can do the same, but smoking does it the best. In your deep unconscious, smoking is related with sucking milk from your mother's breast. And as civilization has grown, no woman wants the child to be brought up by breast-feeding - naturally; he will destroy the breast. The breast will lose its roundness, its beauty.
Meditation practice is like piano scales, basketball drills, ballroom dance class. Practice requires discipline; it can be tedious; it is necessary. After you have practiced enough, you become more skilled at the art form itself. You do not practice to become a great scale player or drill champion. You practice to become a musician or athlete. Likewise, one does not practice meditation to become a great meditator. We meditate to wake up and live, to become skilled at the art of living.
Meditation is to be aware of every thought and of every feeling, never to say it is right or wrong but just to watch it and move with it. In that watching you begin to understand the whole movement of thought and feeling. And out of this awareness comes silence. Silence put together by thought is stagnation, is dead, but the silence that comes when thought has understood its own beginning, the nature of itself, understood how all thought is never free but always old - this silence is meditation in which the meditator is entirely absent, for the mind has emptied itself of the past.
The greatest teacher in healing is nature itself. To be out in the nature is like being surrounded and embraced by love. Trees are also very beautiful people, who have their own innate wisdom and who are already in oneness with Existence. And the sky whispers its silent message that, beyond everything, there is only one sky. A female meditator describes it like there is a basic meditative quality in nature. She says: "There is nothing in nature that questions each others existence like people do. Everything is allowed to exist and everything is allowed to be exactly as it is - and seasons come and go. It is not strange that people love to be out in nature and experiences that they come in harmony with themselves, because, in nature, there is nothing that tries to change them. There is a quality in the air, which can be called a meditative quality".
Swami Dhyan Giten
To be able to die consciously, we need to prepare for death while we are still living. Only if we live consciously, we can die consciously. Only a meditator is able to die consciously as life is an opportunity to prepare for death. Meditation is a death, a death of the ego. Death is not in opposition of life, death is the finale, the crescendo of life. How we die shows us how we have been living. Death is not an end, death is a new beginning, a new life.
Swami Dhyan Giten
For five years, I have been sick and I have been trying to will myself to be better. To think harder about being better, to improve more. To become a better breather, reactor, meditator, hoping that if I just try hard enough, the symptoms will go away and I'll feel like myself again, like a self I remember as if out of a rearview mirror except with this one, the objects are smaller than they appear. I have tried to force myself to be more clearheaded, energetic, grounded. Tried yoga, acupuncture, cognitive behavioral therapy, talk therapy, and long walks in the woods. And every few months, when I finally felt I'd reached a zenith of my abilities with yoga, CBT, or talk therapy, I would give it another shot: go to another doctor, a Western doctor, one with an M.D. and a white coat, and I would tell him or her my symptoms (for the gender of the doctor does not matter only, it would seem, my gender), and hope that once again, the doctor would pay attention, would take my case, would try to help me so that I didn't have to so deeply and fervently try to help myself.
The Happiest Man in The World The French interpreter for the 14th Dalai Lama, former academic and dedicated meditator Matthieu Ricard, came into the spotlight in the field of neural science after being named 'the happiest man in the world'. Naturally, there are many other men and women who demonstrate such equanimity, but the studies on his brain uncovered truly astonishing results. MRI scans showed that Matthieu Ricard and other serious long-term meditators (with more than 10, 000 hours of practice each) were mentally, emotionally and spiritually fulfilled and displayed an abundance of positive emotions and equanimity in the left pre-frontal cortex of the brain. When talking about his mindfulness training, Matthieu Ricard said with humility that: 'Happiness is a skill. It requires effort and time'.
By the second day, the song lyrics had faded, but in their place came darker irritations. Gradually, I started to become aware of a young man sitting just behind me and to the left. I had noticed him when he first entered the mediation hall, and had felt a flash of annoyance at the time: something about him, especially his beard, had struck me as too calculatedly dishevelled, as if he were trying to make a statement. Now his audible breathing was starting to irritate me, too. It seemed studied, unnatural, somehow theatrical. My irritation slowly intensified - a reaction that struck me as entirely reasonable and proportionate at the time. It was all beginning to feel like a personal attack. How much contempt must the bearded meditator have for me, I seethed silently, deliberately to decide to ruin the serenity of my meditation by behaving so obnoxiously? Experienced retreat-goers, it turns out, have a term for this phenomenon. The call it 'vipassana vendetta'. In the stillness tiny irritations become magnified into full-blown hate campaigns; the mind is so conditioned to attaching to storylines that it seizes upon whatever's available. Being on retreat had temporarily separated me from all the real causes of distress in my life, and so, apparently, I was inventing new ones. As I shuffled to my narrow bed that evening, I was still smarting about the loud-breathing man. I did let go of the vendetta eventually - but only because I'd fallen into an exhausted and dreamless sleep