Meditations, Explorations and More
Continuing from yesterday with Lisa Machado’s queries:
LM: One of your strategies to reach this state of being “present” is meditation. Tell us a bit about meditation. What is meditation? How does it help us achieve an awareness?
SSD: Let’s start with two definitions of meditation so we are all on the same page.
Meditation: an intentional and self-regulated focusing of attention, whose purpose is to relax and calm the mind and body.
And the definition of one of the most popular forms of meditation:
Mindfulness meditation: a form in which distracting thoughts and feelings are not ignored but instead acknowledged and observed nonjudgmentally as they arise in order to detach from them and gain insight and awareness.
As you can see from these definitions, meditation is primarily a mental, mind-clearing activity aimed at calming and clearing the mind and body, gaining insight and awareness.
What Full Body Presence is about is a step beyond meditation. It involves engaging the whole sensory system in an awareness exploration of not just your thoughts, but your sensations, your emotions, your inner intuitive hits and cellular body wisdom. Images can flash across the screen of your awareness, new or familiar sensations can arise, and emotions can flow through in an exploration of your inner landscape.
I think of meditation as something more observational, done purposefully from somewhere on the “sidelines” so as to not get sucked into it all. Full Body Presence Explorations are meant to help you slide right into the flow of the river of your inner existence – discovering what is there – then filling up the container of your being with nourishment so you can hold and be with the scary places in your life as well as feeling the joy of being alive. It is a cousin to meditation, but not the same thing.
Guided Imagery and Hypnosis are two systems that are also cousins. They give you images to see and feel so that you can change your inner landscape for the better. However, they are systems that tell you what to find – they do not help you uncover what is uniquely yours, which is what happens with my Explorations. (Listen to all three Explorations for the details on how to uncover your unique path to healing, calm, joy and peace.) Hypnosis and Guided Imagery are related, because they take people into their inner landscapes, but not the same process at all.
LM: I am sure you have heard people say that they have trouble meditating… That quieting their mind is impossible. What are your three tips to help someone be successful at meditating?
SSD: Referencing what I just said above, I actually find that a lot of people who have trouble meditating, or quieting their mind, love the Full Body Presence Explorations. SO, if you are having trouble, please stop trying to meditate. Go listen to the three audio Explorations instead, and enjoy yourself!
TIP #1 – If you are feeling what is happening in your body (vs. trying to control your mind), it wakes up something inside that naturally supports your mind in relaxing.
TIP #2 – If you are exploring new experiences in each moment, (such as what people are guided to do in these three Explorations) the mind is engaged in a way that draws it out of our normal neurotic patterns of thinking and trying to control everything.
TIP #3 – Your body has an infinite amount of intelligence that is constantly unfolding. When you engage your openness to discovery, rather than your judgmental mind, whole worlds unfold – it is truly amazing at times. Relaxing and nurturing at the very least!
LM: Meditation has achieved a bit of fame in the last decade, riding the growing popularity of such healing practices as yoga. Despite this, there are many people who continue to classify meditation as a passing trend, despite claims that meditation has the power to help people overcome fear and anxiety and bring happiness to their lives. What is your answer to these critics?
SSD: The answer lies in your experience. Once you have successfully dropped into your own inner landscape and opened the doors to your inner wisdom, there is no going back. The people who are locked in their left brains, driven by their inner critics, demanding that all of life be linear, rational and reasonable are being left behind.
So give it a try and see for yourself. Whether you find regular meditation or the Full Body Presence Explorations to be your doorway home, go for it! Be your own authority here and decide from your own inner wisdom.