Research consistently shows the benefits of generating space in our lives through meditation.
The regular practice of connecting to stillness supports our ability to function more effectively and reach more of our potential. In short, it increases our mental, physical, and spiritual capacity.
This article provides a great summary and detail of proven improvements.
Here are some of the meditations that I find refreshing and that have supported my own journey. Enjoy.
Meditation on Your Breath and Personal Peace
This meditation takes you through breathing into your belly and into a guided serene visualization. It uses a wonderful combination of natural sounds and gentle music overtones, as well as beautiful imagery if you choose to watch as well as listen.
Each of us, whether biologically male or female, has a choice about the extent to which they express empowering feminine qualities. Sadly, for many of us, feminine qualities have been derogated. As a result, we have diminished their importance in our lives and even repressed them. This means that we cannot give them full expression, which undermines our ability to reach our potential. We may not even consciously realize that this has occurred. But balanced incorporation of both masculine and feminine qualities is key to full engagement in life.
Consider the following seven empowering feminine qualities, and how they are expressed in your life. Do they enrich your experience or are they showing up with dysfunction?
This quality shows up in the archetypes of the dancer, virgin, or concubine. Those who emulate beauty for beauty’s sake. It pertains to decoration, grace, and vulnerability. It is the extent to which you can trust enough to be tender, delicate, and allowing. This yang feminine energy is defined by appreciation and the state of being responsive and yielding. The yin masculine qualities of assertion and initiation provide balance. In its detriment, innocent appreciation and sharing of beauty are lost and manipulation occurs. When you are sensitive to this exchange, a true partnership can be achieved.
The Middle Way is about balance but is not as simple as adjusting weights until they are equal and then you are done. This is because the weights themselves are not constant, so, you need to pay attention to how they shift in quality.
In other words, it is less like linear pendulum oscillation, and more like a spinning disc. Fine adjustments allow you to more completely meet your needs and priorities by optimizing where you concentrate your time.
Needsand the Middle Way
Your fundamental needs do not change that much. What changes as you move beyond childhood, is the extent to which they are your personal responsibility. We often do not pay them much attention until one is neglected and we feel its absence. As long as a certain level of safe shelter, available resource, community, accomplishment, and inner evolution is occurring, all is well.
However, it is easy to see what happens if our environmental temperature becomes hazardous. Or, perhaps if we experience a restriction of food or water. What is less obvious is the physiological reaction to solitude and isolation. Or even to stagnation in achievement.
Our needs relate to the environment with which we surround ourselves. They depend on career choices, family commitments, financial pressures, and health issues. And, these may need overhauling from time to time. Consequently, it is up to you to find the sweet spot where you experience harmony by choosing what is required and eliminating what is not.
Applying the Middle Way means bringing attention to 1) Where you do and don’t need to go. 2) How you do and don’t need to feel. And, as well, 3) What you do and don’t need to think.
Generating a wish list or dreams list is one way to connect to your possibilities and inner desires. The list itself can take whatever form you prefer. It can simply be a list, or it could be organized by themes, or in the form of a chart.
Taking time to generate a wish list – and it should take some time – gives you a reference point, a place to check-in when you lack resolve or inspiration. Allow your list to grow with you. Don’t be afraid to remove items that are no longer a good fit, such as possessions, or skills, or activities that were a priority for previous ways of thinking. Take note of any areas where you don’t have inspiration; here you can ask what might support you in identifying what you would like to create. It is your opportunity to brainstorm and write down everything that comes to mind that you have ever wanted to do in any domain. In fact, you can use the different areas of your life for inspiration. For example:
The last key in this series is to never give up. Once you know exactly what you want, and begin to take action on it, applying a positive framework, and moving forward even when you are scared, you must persist even when you experience setbacks. Here are some practices that will carry you through when you encounter obstacles or make mistakes.
1) Hold Yourself in High Esteem
Perceive yourself as extraordinary. Know what you are really good at, your strengths, gifts, and talents, and deeply appreciate them. Believe in the unique contribution that you are making and pledge to honor this even when it feels like no-one else is.