If it feels nearly impossible to sit still, I feel ya—I know it’s hard, sometimes a real pain to get in that meditation practice.
There are days when it seems like an extra challenge to just sit and shift our focus inward. We’ve got an itch here, another one there. We’re all fidgety and then even the phone rings. Finally! An excuse to get up.
There are times when we sit back and try again and again. And that’s something we should be really proud of, seriously, because it takes willpower and intention to develop a real meditation practice, one that we can actually stick with. If we’re struggling, let’s not forget that intention in itself has great power and potential to whirl us ahead into the realms of inner space.
But if today’s not the day for sitting in lotus immersed in mantra or we just want to try something different, then let’s take it outside and put some motion into our meditation.
One of my favorite practices of all time is the walking meditation, which has its roots in cultures from far and wide. In fact, there probably exists a form of this practice everywhere in the world. In some places this sort of meditation is as natural as breathing and isn’t even called meditation, more like just being present and absorbing everything and letting that everything permeate the entire being.
So here is what we want to do:
- Formulate a mission.
Go with anything that is currently an issue. Either ask an open-ended question, such as how can I be a better spouse/ parent/ teacher/ etc? Or how can I find more personal time? It’s also possible to state that we’d like to receive a teaching about something particular. Once we have an intention, it’s not something we have to continue repeating during the walk, just keep that mission in the heart area.
- Start walking.
If it’s possible, walk in nature or in a park. Of course, we can try in a city too, but there will be way more impulses and it might be overwhelming. Walk slowly. Stay present in each step. About 10-15 minutes is all we need.
Observe the surroundings; notice what is happening. We’re not trying to find anything, rather just staying open to whatever catches our attention. Anything that sticks out to us, is trying to tell us something. Don’t over analyze. The teaching will reveal itself naturally if we let it.
Reflect on the walk and any teachings that were received or experiences that we had. It can be useful to take a few moments and journal what happened. It may be much later that we understand a particular message.
- Give thanks.
Express gratitude in whatever way feels appropriate. Take a moment to remember that Nature is a healer and teacher that is always available to us for personal growth.
Cultivating a walking mediation practice is a powerful way to be present and connected to our surroundings. Allowing Nature to guide us is not only rewarding but also a true blessing.
Enjoy the walk of life. Namaste!
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Assistant Ed: Bruce Casteel/Ed: Bryonie Wise