Recently I enjoyed a conversation with a friend and colleague about the power of meditation.
She reminded me that our conversation some time ago expanded her notion of meditation in a way she hadn’t expected. She had always considered meditation as something a person practices from a place of stillness. When she had explored this kind of meditation she did not experience the desired response of calm, energy, clarity. She felt frustrated, fidgety and impatient. She did not continue.
Of course those who practice this type of meditation told her she just needed to practice it more and not to give up or give in to her “resistance”. My friend is strong and clear about her feelings and she did not allow this commentary to influence her. She knew what she felt and she knew what she wanted and what she did not want. She did not continue meditating.
In that same conversation my friend described to me her passion for running. She said when she ran she felt empowered and relaxed. She would notice a rhythm to her body and her movements. This rhythmic quality expanded from physical sensation to feelings, and she would notice a quiet stillness of thinking and thought.
When I told her that sounded to me like meditation her face lit up in acknowledgment and agreement. For my friend, running is a moving meditation in which cognitive stillness is activated, and a free flow of feeling and sensation abounds. This resonated with her and explained why her desire for running transcended the physical to the emotional and cognitive.
We of course can practice prescribed forms of meditation to improve our lives. We can also expand and create unique and personal forms of meditation practices that may include stillness, movement, breath, music, and chanting. Perhaps our options are only limited by creativity and awareness and exploration.