I have to begin by saying that I consider meditation to be the single most important practice that we, as humans, can engage in. And This is why I would like to share these meditation quotes with you today.
The benefits (according to the Mayo Clinic) are numerous, well-researched, and documented, and often lead to profound changes in the lives of those who practice regularly.
It is also important to understand that just like doctors “practice” medicine, a meditator “practices” meditation. This means that the process is never complete because there is always more to learn and understand about our magnificent minds and bodies.
So this means that we should never become upset, disappointed, or stressed out in any way whatsoever if we think we are ‘not able to meditate’ or we are currently not achieving the results we desire. The operative word to focus upon here is PRACTICE! Because with more consistent practice, more benefits will be realized.
The reality is that we can all meditate. However, we may have to spend a little time finding a method or process that suits our unique personalities and lifestyle. And once we do this and can settle into a regular practice, we will have wished that we had taken up practicing meditation sooner.
With this in mind, let’s explore what some influential minds have to say about meditation. But first a brief definition of what is meditation.
What is meditation?
Meditation is the intentional application of practices to enhance our awareness of ‘SELF,’ with the goal of improving our understanding of our place within the greater environment within which we exist. It’s a practice of allowing our innermost thoughts and feelings to reveal themselves to us so that we can process them without judgment, and come to know ourselves more intimately. Meditation is an intensely personal experience and therefore is not the same for everyone, and not even the same for us every time we meditate.
Meditation Quotes For Building A Better Life
“Be here now. Be someplace later. Is that so complicated?” – David M. Bader
I love this quote….. Straight to the heart of the matter. Yes, it is easy to say, but the reality for most of us is that to be present at this moment, without distraction, is not something that comes easily.
Our biggest problem is that we to improve to be ‘involved with’ so many things that are going on outside of us.
However, it’s important to understand that we are not ‘directly involved with’ the bad news we see happening on TV that is in a different country; or the fact that our friend’s boss’s girlfriend is having an affair; or that there was a cold snap in Argentina that killed 27 mountain goats….
And yet we expose ourselves to this content, and a lot more, on a daily basis, and then discuss it with whoever will listen to us. Then, to make matters worse, the thoughts we are having elicit feelings about this content…….. and often, they’re NEGATIVE THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS.
What?…… Why would we do this to ourselves???????
Think about it…. Our lives are becoming more and more complicated because we are exposing ourselves to more and more content (most of which is none of our business) and then having emotional reactions to it! Most of this content will never affect us personally, so why do we allow it to affect us mentally and emotionally?
The best way to have a clearer mind and feel better about our lives is to practice minding our own business more of the time. Then we can put our focus where it will benefit us….. on creating an improved life experience for ourselves! And the way we can achieve this is by learning to become more present IN THIS MOMENT more of the time! And meditation is by far the best process for detaching ourselves from the unnecessary dramas in our lives.
“Meditation is intermittent fasting for the mind. Too much sugar leads to a heavy body, and too many distractions lead to a heavy mind. Time spent undistracted and alone, in self-examination, journaling, meditation, resolves the unresolved and takes us from mentally fat to fit.” – Naval Ravikant
Have you tried intermittent fasting yet? My opinion is that it is exactly what this quote implies….. medicine for the body and soul, as meditation is medicine for the mind and soul.
We tend to have a consensus belief that the more we consume, the better off we are. Our modern societies encourage us to eat and consume beyond what is necessary for our well-being. And guess what? It’s not good for us, physically, mentally, or emotionally! The effects of overeating are easy to see, and so are the effects of an overactive mind…… stress, anxiety, sleeplessness, depression, etc.
To get back to a healthier way of life, most of us need to identify and then strip away the excess stuff in our lives. And this all begins with the excessive thoughts we have about stuff that we shouldn’t concern ourselves with. It’s just mental garbage and it pollutes our minds and distracts us from enjoying a more pleasant experience.
However, we are fortunate that our magnificent minds are naturally orientated towards creating health and well-being for us….. but for the majority of us, they are prevented from doing their job because of the sheer amount of mental garbage that we keep exposing ourselves to.
So, if we can just STOP, slow down, and remove ourselves from all distractions, then our minds will become still….. and, with time, YOU will be amazed at how great you begin to feel!
“Meditation means letting go of our baggage, letting go of all the pre-rehearsed stories and inner-dialogue that we’ve grown so attached to.” – Andy Puddicombe
When we sit on our mat, our cushion, lie down, stand on one leg with one finger up our nose….. whatever posture we prefer, we are there to forget our ego-self. Forgetting does not imply actively releasing from memory, but instead being in the present moment and experiencing something more than the normal mental, emotional and physical activity that is the make-up of our busy lives.
Our inner dialogue and pre-rehearsed stories are all related to the world of events, people, and circumstances that are happening outside of ourselves….. and this is where this stuff belongs…. outside of us.
Our thoughts and emotions are not who we are even though this is what most of us identify ‘OURSELVES’ with.
So, what is ‘OUR SELF?’ Our thoughts are just things we are thinking about based on the things we expose our senses to. If we see an accident, we probably think ‘that’s no good,’ and have feelings that are unpleasant in nature. If we see young kittens and puppies playing together, we will (hopefully) experience pleasant thoughts and feelings.
Our vision is just one of the senses we have to experience the environment. If we hear a gunshot, will we have the same thoughts and feelings as when we hear wedding bells? What about when we smell a beautiful flower or a rotting pile of garbage? Our thoughts and feelings are very much dependent on what we taste and touch as well.
Therefore, the question becomes “Are we the good thoughts we have or the bad thoughts we have?” Maybe we are the pleasant feelings, but not the feelings we don’t enjoy?
The reality is that we are neither the good, the bad, nor the wanted or unwanted thoughts and feelings. They are just programmed responses to external stimuli that we have learned/developed throughout our life’s journey. And the good news is that we don’t have to identify with them once we understand that they do not define us.
This means that we can free ourselves from our programmed responses to life so that we can begin to live in a way that supports our soul’s desire for continued growth and expansion. And meditation is the most valuable tool available that gives us insights into the workings of our false ego-mind. And once we release attachment to the stories we tell about ourselves that no longer serve our greatest well-being, we become free to rewrite a new and better life story for ourselves.
“With every breath, the old moment is lost; a new moment arrives. We exhale and we let go of the old moment. It is lost to us. In doing so, we let go of the person we used to be. We inhale and breathe in the moment that is becoming. In doing so, we welcome the person we are becoming. We repeat the process. This is meditation. This is renewal. This is life.” – Lama Surya Das
Breath is life! Our breath feeds the more than 50 trillion cells in our awesome bodies with life-sustaining energy. Every breath is renewing us, ‘in with the new and vital life force, and out with the old and castoff waste.’ Our bodies instinctively know that this is the natural way of life. However, in our minds, it’s a different story.
We tend to hold on to past thoughts….. Especially the not-so-good ones! Out of all of nature, it is only humankind that has this ability, that of consciously choosing what to think. And it seems that we are missing the true purpose behind this awesome, life-enhancing, incredible gift. As a species, we seem to have deviated away from what is best for us. And this is the source of much of our confusion, unhappiness, jealousy, anger, fear, etc.
Regular meditation practice helps us to release attachment to the past and to ‘clean up’ our thinking process. With practice, we naturally become more present IN THIS MOMENT. Being present allows us to better utilize the new energy, the new vital life force that we breathe in. And this life force is always striving for growth, expansion, well-being, and joy.
The good news is that while meditating, we don’t need to do anything for this process to occur…. In fact, whatever we do just gets in the way…. Our job is just to be in the practice and allow the natural process of renewal to occur within us, physically, mentally, and emotionally.
“When meditation is mastered, the mind is unwavering like the flame of a candle in a windless place” – Bhagavad Gita
I can’t say that I am ‘unwavering like a candle flame in a windless place,’ but my life is far different from what it used to be 20 years ago, the time before I began practicing meditation.
Like most people, I was a ‘reactionary’ to life’s events and was self-torture by thoughts of past regrets and fears for the future. Regular meditation has cleared away much of the excess crap that was a constant part of my daily thought processes….. crap about stuff that shouldn’t have been there in the first place, crap that was preventing me from having a pleasant life experience.
Now, my life is a lot more pleasant in all aspects. My relationships are better, my creativity is enhanced, my thought processes are clearer, and there is a lot less stuff in my life that causes my unease (very little in fact!)
When we ‘spring-clean’ our minds from unnecessary stuff, our lives become freer, more than you can now imagine, and things just naturally find a way of working out in the best possible way for us.
“I meditate so that my mind cannot complicate my life” – Sri Chinmoy
So, when are you next going to meditate?
I’m going to my mat as soon as I finish this post…. because, the best time to meditate is when we are already feeling really good. It’s while we are in a good state of mind that we can easily allow this feeling to expand within us.
This also trains our bodies to feel good as well. Our neural connections in our brains can more easily be rewired for more good thoughts and feelings when we are already feeling good. And the more we take advantage of this, the easier and more beneficial it becomes.
Personally, I don’t meditate when I’m not feeling good. Experience has shown me that it takes a while to shift away from negative thoughts, and it’s easier to get into a positive mindset by just going and doing something that I really enjoy….. like practicing yoga, writing blogs for my website, having awesome sex, or meeting up with great-fun friends!
What do you do to put yourself in a great mood? Why not let us know in the comments section below so we can all benefit from your experience?
Remember, life’s a journey…. And if you’re a beginner, you’re not going to achieve a great meditation practice overnight. But with consistent practice, you will achieve a better life for yourself, and by extension, all those that you love!
Have an awesome day,
With love and respect for all souls playing the game of life,