Musical & Writing Support: Meditation Notes

Some sits are harder than others. Had a really comfortable rhythm going the first stretch of the online meditation challenge. Sitting the past three weeks I’ve been getting a lot of benefit from lengthening & adding time to my daily concentration practice yet had been struggling trying to add the lovingkindness & compassion meditations Sharon suggests.  I kept adding time, doing more walking meditations & slo mo exercises in lieu of making space for the repetition of the metta phrases.

It wasn’t until I was reviewing the meditation journal I’ve been keeping & my digital notes that the Insight Timer mobile application let’s me jot down at the end of a sit that I picked up on where my block to the phrases was coming from. Writing has always been a big part of my personal process & creative life but I hadn’t done much directed writing. The writing with intention practices are giving me structure my monkey mind craves while giving me a great tool for reflection.

Tibetan Horns Photo by Wonderlane

Seems I get attached to doing things one way, really quickly, both on & off the mat. In the end it was alot of mind chatter, excuses & poor time management undermining my effort. I was being too strict on myself about my time, not allowing myself to mix it up out of fear of loosing ground in my practice. It was also about not using the tools I have been developing with the Real Happiness 28 Day Challenge both mental & digital.

Going over my notes I was reminded of the great benefit the mobile applications & guided audio meditations were at setting my concentration practice foundation.  It was also reassuring to see how I struggled and resisted that practice as well. The little fragments of thoughts & impressions also brought me back to the importance of being gentle, forgiving & persistent with myself with the support available to me.

Easing into the lovingkindness & compassion meditations now by playing guided meditations I’ve found free online. One of my favorite LovingKindness Guided meditations is by Sylvia Boorstein. It was an impromptu meditation she did with On Being‘s Krista Tippett during a Valentine’s Day Program in February 2011 and is quite delightful in it’s lighthearted tone & casual phrasings.  You can find Sylvia Boorstein’s LovingKindness Mediation on SoundCloud along with lots of other great meditations & teachings.

An unexpected gem that fell into my lap recently that I’ve found supportive is the Metta Chant Ambika Cooper recorded with Sharon. The lovely musical track is being offered as a free download and I’ve found playing it in the back ground while I journal very helpful. It’s a nice addition to my audio incense collection of mantras & Tibetan music I play while writing.

Would love to hear about the guided meditations others find useful & any must listen to mindful musical track or mantra. One of my standards is the album of traditional Tibetan chants & practices by Gabrielle Roth & The Mirrors called Refuge. What’s yours?

 

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