This is a short article about a very short yet powerful technique that you can do almost anytime and anywhere.
Meditation—even micro-meditation—can lead to better health, clarity of mind, heightened awareness of self and others, mindfulness, reduced stress, anger management, inner peace, wisdom and happiness. Meditation can strengthen the muscles of calmness, creativity, and compassion. Meditation has even been shown to positively change the physicality of one’s brain. There are many scientific studies that support these assertions.
Micro-meditation is short stints of quiet meditation—from a few seconds to a few minutes—during which one blocks out as much light, sound, sensation, and thought as possible. Although there are different meditation techniques for different people, different purposes, different times and different places, this is the one I generally prefer and personally consider to be the most beneficial at this time, though I also engage in mindfulness, compassion, breathing and smile micro-meditations.
As Buddha suggested and the Dalai Lama reiterates and recommends, one should adjust the techniques to suit one’s own personal needs, testing it for efficacy, and adjusting it to work better for you. And as with all other skills, practicing this technique will improve your comfort and skill.
Studies have shown that short bursts of exercise can be at least as effective in boosting one’s health as much longer exercise regimens, just as a short nap can be at least as rejuvenating as a longer one. Especially when properly focused, I believe this may be the case with meditation, as well.
When I engage in micro-meditation, I sit as comfortably as I can (usually in a comfortable chair), try to still myself, close my eyes, cover them with my (hopefully) warm cupped hands and focus on the nothingness.
Within nothing is the potential for everything.
If I hear a sound or if a thought arises, I simply return to the nothingness without trying to think about it, without worrying about anything, without feeling guilt or inadequacy, without blame or anger, without negativity or doubt, without pride or ego, without getting stuck in memories about the past or fantasies about the future.
Micro-meditation is very now—quite literally, in the moment—because there really isn’t anything else but that moment. And then the next. The past is always gone and the future never arrives; it is always now. Now. Now. If this form of micro-meditation is successful, however, achieving nothingness, even just for a few seconds, also obliterates the sense of now, along with everything else.
When done well, I momentarily lose all sense of time and place, all sense of a world within or without, no sense of language or culture, no sense of who or what I am, let alone my name or any other information. It is a form of consciously losing consciousness by being hyperconscious. By consciously being in the nothingness, I melt into the universal unity of oneness with everything, even if very briefly.
With my micro-meditation, which I can do practically anytime and anywhere that I can be comfortable and safe, I enter a fleeting state of nothingness, then come out of it refreshed, energized, less physically achy, more mentally aware and more spiritually inspired.
Whether you never do meditation or regularly do so, give micro meditation it a try. It will help you explore how it may work for you.
Regardless of whether you experience its benefits right away, I promise micro-meditation won’t take too much of your time—-you have very little to lose in giving it a try, yet so much to gain.
Author: Dan Brook
Editor: Alli Sarazen
Photo: Hartwig HKD/ Flickr