What is the purpose of Meditating?


ed: to pay attention to oneself, to give one at least a running chance of rediscovering, appreciating one’s self.


Look Within You:  When the mind becomes naturally quiet, you find out who you really are. You discover your source. The mind is then transcended, and the spiritual consciousness shines.

Libsyn:   If you meditate, and persevere with earnestness and concentration, you will eventually come to realize that there is a world beyond thoughts. You will be able to silence your thoughts, and then meditation will take a new meaning. You will discover the joy and bliss that come when the mind is silent. You will discover a new kind of consciousness, which is beyond the mind and is not dependent on it. In this state of awareness, there are no thoughts, no thinking. It is what the great Indian sage, Sri Ramana Maharshi, called the thoughtless state.

When the mind becomes naturally quiet, you find out who you really are. You discover your source. The mind is then transcended, and the spiritual consciousness shines.

Huffington Post:  There is nothing wrong with meditating in order to calm the mind. All of us can use more calmness in the midst of a busy life. In fact, without some calmness in meditation it is impossible to see anything clearly or distinguish what is real from what is illusion. Once we have attained a stable, calm mind, we can then go deeper. We can, as Zen Master Dogen famously said, “study the self.”

Lama Yeshe:  . . . . . . .  Yet, of all the many people who engage in meditation, only a few really understand its purpose.

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To summarize, it is not the external appearance of our meditation that is important. Whether we sit with our arms folded this way and our legs crossed that way is of little consequence. But it is extremely important to check and see if whatever meditation we do is an actual remedy for our suffering. Does it effectively eliminate the delusions obscuring our mind? Does it combat our ignorance, hatred and greed! If it does reduce these negativities of mind, then it is a perfect meditation, truly practical and greatly worthwhile. If on the other hand it merely serves to generate and increase our negativities, such as pride, then it is only another cause of suffering. In such a case, even though we may say we are meditating, we are not actually following a spiritual path or practicing Dharma at all.

Dharma is a guide away from suffering, away from problems. If our practice does not guide us in this direction then something is wrong and we must investigate what it might be. In fact, the fundamental practice of all true yogis is to discover which of their actions bring suffering and which happiness. They then work to avoid the former and follow the latter as much as possible. This is the essential practice of Dharma.

One final word. All of us who are beginning our practice of Dharma, starting to meditate and gain control of our mind need to rely on proper sources of information. We should read books of sound authority and, when doubts arise, we should consult teachers who have mastered their study and practice. This is very important. If we are guided by books written without a proper understanding, there is the great danger that our life will be spent following an incorrect path. Even more important is choosing the correct teacher, guru or lama. He or she must have correct realizations and must actually live the practice of the Dharma.

Our practice of meditation, of mental cultivation, should not be passive. We shall not be able to break the bonds of suffering by blindly accepting what someone, even a great master, tells us to do. Rather we should use our innate intelligence to check and see if a suggested course of action is effective. If we have good reason to believe that a teaching is valid and will be helpful, then by all means we should follow it. As with medicine, once we have found some that can reasonably be expected to cure us, we should take it. Otherwise, if we swallow anything that happens to come into our hands, we run the great risk of aggravating rather than curing our illness.

 

Calm Awareness:    Meditation is a word defined by many meanings. For this reason, the subject of meditation is so often mystifying and confusing for the truth seeker. In its purest definition, meditation refers to the way, the method, path or process by which one is led from within, to a universal center of calm awareness and inspired intuition. Therefore, the word meditation is best understood as a verb or action taken toward an ultimate objective, rather than as a noun describing a state of being or a goal in and of itself. This booklet advocates the means to an end approach over the various purposes and meanings of other less complete forms of meditations available to the seeker today.
The chanting of repetitious words, songs and mantras of any culture, as well as focusing the attention on an outer or inner image, mandala or candle flame, are most often used as a means to assist the practitioner with their desire to transcend the general field or train of thought-forms, and to interrupt its perpetual presence in the conscious thinking mind. Yet these activities and practices which developed from and are more suited to past generations, only penetrate to the surface levels of spiritual experience and transformation of act and attitude, leaving the deepest of today’s needs undiscovered, non-confronted and unresolved.

Granted we may feel quite relieved to be free of the ever-present nagging compulsions associated with our uncontrolled thinking and feeling. However, a true transcendence of mental activity comes as a result of a discriminating examination of the content of our thoughts, rather than to avoid or discard them for the purpose of a too quick resolution to the various psychological problems and complexes that ironically only the thought-forms themselves can reveal. And so we must not be mislead to believe that detached or transcendental living can be achieved by a mere avoidance of thought with its accompanying pull upon our bodies and minds.

Thoughts, in order to lose their hold on us, must be understood for what they really are; the result of emotional needs and desires on the many levels of our being. There exists a constructive healthy mode of thinking and an unhealthy destructive mode of thinking, and it is meditation’s true purpose and responsibility to bring an individual to a clear understanding and definition of that difference of mind and thought patterns.

The function of a healthy mind is to entertain thought as the vehicle for inspired inner direction and motivation. Thus the meditation process encourages the capacity of the discriminating mind to develop a continuous discerning perspective; the purpose of which is to clarify which thought patterns are worthy of support from those that are not desirable.

Moreover, there can be confusion between the more superficial forms of meditation mentioned above and those that reach to deeper levels of understanding, because the more simple forms can appear to bring about similar and immediate results, that the more profound meditation needs time in which to develop. In fact, one very revealing effect of a more penetrating and productive meditation is its difficulty in performance in the beginning stages, in contrast to the ease with which the other forms of meditation are practiced and experienced.

It is much easier to ignore the observation of thought content than it is to confront it directly for the purpose of self-renewal. But the calm and centered state of being and attitude developed from a true desire to reintegrate healthy thinking into the mind comes only with a greater comprehension of the worthiness of dedicated effort and sincere daily practice.

The serious meditator should not expect to achieve results too quickly, because the first stages of meditation present the practitioner with an invitation to view and become familiar with the content of the subconscious mind. Here in our subconscious thinking reside all the motivating forces and impatience that play upon our emotions and lead us into action. The source of our shortcomings and character issues can be revealed to us through an examination of the thoughts we entertain on levels below our conscious awareness. Thoughts are alive and often in a holding pattern, so to speak, until an emotion is stimulated to bring them to the surface or threshold of the aware and self-observing conscious mind.


Meditation is a word defined by many meanings. For this reason, the subject of meditation is so often mystifying and confusing for the truth seeker. In its purest definition, meditation refers to the way, the method, path or process by which one is led from within, to a universal center of calm awareness and inspired intuition. Therefore, the word meditation is best understood as a verb or action taken toward an ultimate objective, rather than as a noun describing a state of being or a goal in and of itself. This booklet advocates the means to an end approach over the various purposes and meanings of other less complete forms of meditations available to the seeker today.
The chanting of repetitious words, songs and mantras of any culture, as well as focusing the attention on an outer or inner image, mandala or candle flame, are most often used as a means to assist the practitioner with their desire to transcend the general field or train of thought-forms, and to interrupt its perpetual presence in the conscious thinking mind. Yet these activities and practices which developed from and are more suited to past generations, only penetrate to the surface levels of spiritual experience and transformation of act and attitude, leaving the deepest of today’s needs undiscovered, non-confronted and unresolved.

Granted we may feel quite relieved to be free of the ever-present nagging compulsions associated with our uncontrolled thinking and feeling. However, a true transcendence of mental activity comes as a result of a discriminating examination of the content of our thoughts, rather than to avoid or discard them for the purpose of a too quick resolution to the various psychological problems and complexes that ironically only the thought-forms themselves can reveal. And so we must not be mislead to believe that detached or transcendental living can be achieved by a mere avoidance of thought with its accompanying pull upon our bodies and minds.

Thoughts, in order to lose their hold on us, must be understood for what they really are; the result of emotional needs and desires on the many levels of our being. There exists a constructive healthy mode of thinking and an unhealthy destructive mode of thinking, and it is meditation’s true purpose and responsibility to bring an individual to a clear understanding and definition of that difference of mind and thought patterns.

The function of a healthy mind is to entertain thought as the vehicle for inspired inner direction and motivation. Thus the meditation process encourages the capacity of the discriminating mind to develop a continuous discerning perspective; the purpose of which is to clarify which thought patterns are worthy of support from those that are not desirable.

Moreover, there can be confusion between the more superficial forms of meditation mentioned above and those that reach to deeper levels of understanding, because the more simple forms can appear to bring about similar and immediate results, that the more profound meditation needs time in which to develop. In fact, one very revealing effect of a more penetrating and productive meditation is its difficulty in performance in the beginning stages, in contrast to the ease with which the other forms of meditation are practiced and experienced.

It is much easier to ignore the observation of thought content than it is to confront it directly for the purpose of self-renewal. But the calm and centered state of being and attitude developed from a true desire to reintegrate healthy thinking into the mind comes only with a greater comprehension of the worthiness of dedicated effort and sincere daily practice.

The serious meditator should not expect to achieve results too quickly, because the first stages of meditation present the practitioner with an invitation to view and become familiar with the content of the subconscious mind. Here in our subconscious thinking reside all the motivating forces and impatience that play upon our emotions and lead us into action. The source of our shortcomings and character issues can be revealed to us through an examination of the thoughts we entertain on levels below our conscious awareness. Thoughts are alive and often in a holding pattern, so to speak, until an emotion is stimulated to bring them to the surface or threshold of the aware and self-observing conscious mind.

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