Meditation is an essential part of our skills for life. This is the time and space in which you have time to think and more importantly, to listen to your heart and the messages you are being given. I have spoken alre4ady (see previous posts) about the fact that meditation does not have to be a specialised ritual with expensive equipment, it can be as simple as just sitting still in a quiet place under a tree for ten minutes.
I want to take this a step further. There are a lot of every day things which, for me, turn into meditative exercises.
Living in a remote, rural community I do a lot of distance driving. During the drive I take the time to think about the "stuff" crowding my heat and heart and visualise chucking it out the window of the car. At the end of the drive I am clear headed and rested.
Each afternoon (well nearly every afternoon) I go for a walk with my partner and youngest son. During the walk, my partner and I talk about the day, our future plans and anything that pops into our heads really. This is interspersed with a smattering of three year old discussion (always entertaining) and we visualise our future and discard "stuff" that is not helpful or relevant to ourselves or our visualisation. At the end of that half hour walk, we all feel refreshed and revitalised.
Walking meditation is a really good form of discarding unwanted and unhelpful "stuff". I walk when I am on the phone (especially when the conversation is one I don't really want to participate in). I just walk in a pattern from one point to the other. I also do this at other times when I feel I cannot settle to a task or I have been at a task too long. This relaxes my body, clears my mind and allows me to focus on breathing. Very restful and meditative.
Cooking is one of my great passions. I love to grow my own food and then lovingly prepare that food for the people around me. On the days I don't feel like cooking, the food is always mediocre at best, yet when I do feel like cooking and I am not seeing it as a chore that must be done, the food is always great. While I am cooking I focus on pouring loving energy into the food and surrounding myself with that 'love' feeling while I methodically go through the steps required. I also cook by instinct, smell, touch and of course taste, so I am opening the door to listening by following those feelings rather than relying on a book or recipe (in other words, someone else) to tell me what to do. This is very calming for me and provides an excellent opportunity for me to relax and surround myself with positive and loving thoughts.
These everyday, mundane appearing things all act as a form of meditation for me. After their completion I feel the same sense of clear headed restfulness I would (and do) feel after half an hour burning incense and listening to calming music etc. What this effectively means is, no matter where I am, how busy I am or how restrictive my life feels in terms of time pressure and the like, I can and do have time to meditate. This is a priceless gift!
With love and light