Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Pratyahara and finding your center in meditation.

Meditation is difficult. Whether you're just learning how to do it, or if you've been doing it for a while. You will always find that day where you simply cannot turn off your mind chatter. Everything twitches and itches and you can't stop running over your to-do list. This is why we practice Pratyahara. In the classes I teach I will always try to include a seated meditation. It maybe just for the first 3 minutes with deep breathing or at the end after savasana to maintain a quiet but not sleepy mind after the entire practice.

Pratyahara is about not engaging. Literally -drawing towards the opposite. I believe in attachments in life. Its why I live my life. I don't believe I lose myself in the world or because of my attachments. I am pretty confident about being myself in whatever extent that means to myself. And it maybe be based on these attachments but I am not moving to a cave and giving up my belongings. That is not realistic. I love living in NYC. BUT being able to detach to outside stimuli is an important practice overall, especially if I want to live a healthy life in NYC. To sit quietly and let the mind rest, turn my focus inward toward my center. The city is constantly buzzing with stimulus. There are constant advertisements, sirens, parades, people. Lots of energy. Its easy to be constantly engaged and constantly effected by all of this.

When I meditate I focus on my center. The center can mean anything to any given person. For me its somewhere in the heart area. Chinese people make a connection between mind and heart. Your heart is your mind. For other people its the third eye or the center of the brain. Maybe the solar plexus. It doesn't matter, just focus on it. Don't like your thoughts run around, leave your head or your body. Keep it on your center and be comfortable there. Its important to find comfort in yourself and with yourself. Settle into that center and bring all your other energy behind you. Just hold the buzzing back for a moment. And do nothing else.

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