People often ask:
- Did you see any change in yourself since you started meditation?
- How do you know when it works or not?
- I’ve been meditating for a while, but it seems like there are benefits and I’m just wasting my time, sitting with my eyes closed.
Meditation and mindfulness practices work. Period. Today it worked for me.
I’ve posted a chair for sale on Facebook. The buyer contacted me and scheduled the time to come over to take a look at it. I gave the guy $5 off and sold the chair for $45. We wished each other a good day and went separate ways. He carried his brand new chair in the box into his Civic, I went home. Few hours later I came outside and saw the empty box from the chair I just sold laying down on my lawn. The guy simply threw it, right in front of the house.
Immediate reaction: What coward! I am going to send him a FB message and say something like “Thanks for leaving your trash behind!” Or “It was really nice of you to leave your trash on my lawn.” I would also add “I hope you enjoy your chair” or “All the best, my friend!”, just to add an extra stab at the end.
About a minute later I realized something. I became aware of this voice in my head who was judging the guy. Who is talking? Silence…. All of a sudden, this negative chatter disappeared and I felt relieved — immediately. Something significant just happened.
I asked myself what good will it do for me, if I send the message? Will it teach the guy something? Of course not. He lives his life and behaves the way he believes is right. Who am I to teach him? Will it make me feel better? Maybe for a few seconds, but who is the one that will actually feel better from it? The voice in my head will — the EGO. It will feel important and acknowledged. How dare you treat me like that, you coward?! Of course EGO don’t like to be treated like that. It needs to fight back, to save the face. HA-HA!
The second I became aware of the chatter in my head — it disappeared. I felt relief without even texting the guy and telling everyone around what a coward I met today. I believe this relief was nothing but the sense of freedom. I realized I became freed to choose my reaction. I became free from having my emotions and feelings controlled by external stimuli. I got a feel to be free to feel the way I chose to feel, not dictated my other people or circumstances. This is what meditation is. This is one of the mindfulness manifestations. This is how my meditation practice pays back.
Awareness = Freedom
Mindfulness = Freedom
Meditation = Freedom