Back in the day before I started meditating I was an expert at medicating myself. I had been doing it my whole life without even realizing it.
I used to medicate myself with food, shopping and sleep. Sleep was my favorite drug of choice. When I was asleep I was in the utmost unconscious state and I did not have to feel my pain or much less face it. When everything became all too much I would just go to sleep. I did this for years until I learned how to meditate.
Meditation gave me my life back.
Being silent with myself was too much to bear. So I quickly became addicted to shopping. Shopping would give me an immediate high. I would experience instant gratification only to crash a few hours, or days, later with buyer’s remorse, because I certainly did not need it or couldn’t necessarily afford it. All it did was add more baggage to my load and put me in debt. Not just physically but spiritually as well.
Binge eating was also something I used to do on a daily basis. I was trying to fill up an insatiable emptiness and void in my being. Dumping rubbish into my body unconsciously to anesthetize my feelings which were too painful to process on my own. All this would leave me feeling sick, bloated and depressed creating more and more self hatred. It was like being on a vicious cycle of death with no hope in sight.
Self medicating is a common response to daily stress that most of us do without even realizing it.
The Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras begins with “Yoga citta vritti nirodha,” which translates as “unified consciousness comes with cessation of thoughts.”
When we quiet the mind we uncover the depths of our being and allow it to express itself.
Meditation has many benefits:
1. It lowers the heart rate and helps reverse heart disease.
2. It can reduce anxiety, depression and other volatile emotions such as rage, anger and guilt.
3. It helps to handle and lower stress.
4. Results in better sleep at night.
5. Strengthens the nervous system in which it repairs all the damage done due to stress.
6. It increases our awareness and intuition.
7. It generates wisdom and compassion.
Meditation is much more than physical it has a much greater impact than we might be aware of—it strips down the false illusions of the mind. The idea of who we think we are and how we identify with our reality.
Meditation expands the mind and reduces our TPS (thoughts per second). The average human being has about 70,000 thousand thoughts per day. When we meditate we reduce the amount of thoughts, and experience more gaps in between which is the space where our consciousness resides. It is a space of oneness and eternal bliss.
Meditation is like removing all the dirt from our unconscious mind.
It puts us in communion with Source. This is where we get to listen beyond the stillness. It is a space much different than prayer. Prayer is where we are speaking but in meditation we are listening—listening to our being.
Meditation helps us to shed the layers and layers of false identities that we carry about ourselves. It is just like peeling an onion—only to reveal our true essence.
Meditation has given me the courage to face my inner most demons and let go of what I thought of as ‘me.’
When we want to connect with our true Self, go inward not outward.
Instead of filling ourselves with garbage like the daily news, drugs, alcohol, junk food and toxic relationships, let us fill ourselves with something that awakens our consciousness and liberates us to who we really are.
We can nourish ourselves, our Atman (soul) through meditation.
“What you seek is seeking you.” ~ Rumi
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Travis May
Photo: Wiki Commons