Life Inspired By Nature
“Here we are – the soldiers of life. We long for a paradise with tranquility. Relying on angels to arrive. Never realizing they are already here. Also, they do not wear their armor for fun.”
~ Maria Lehtman
How do you train your mind? Do you realize that as complex beings our mind is a renewable engine? We are never ready – never complete. However, our minds can become stronger.
When meditation is not enough
“Meditation is the soul’s perspective glass.” ~ Owen Feltham
My meditation studies began when I was 5-years old. Accompanying my parents to Norway one summer I learned from the pioneers of the transcendental meditation (TM). I practiced alongside my parents and learned to offset some of the pains that I had. I suffered from headaches and migraines very early on. At the time, there was not enough support for the right nutrition, physical training, and physiotherapy that could have helped me further.
About transcendental meditation: “Perhaps its greatest benefit is that it’s relatively quick to learn and easy to master. No waiting weeks or months of practice before you see results: TM cuts right to the chase, taking only days — or for some, minutes — before one feels a reprieve from their painful and overwhelming thoughts.” ~ Forbes
During the meditation retreat, everyone received a personal mantra. Repeating the mantra and breathing exercise, I would sit meditating next to my mother. I had my meditation timer set for 10 minutes, and then I was free to go and play. Growing up I continued to meditate although less frequently. I was creative and kept hobbies that today are called mindfulness practices. I had no idea that my 8-year old girl’s hobbies would later be considered mindfulness practices.
Decades and many more courses later, not to mention rigorous years of team leadership in a tight and competitive ICT field, I hardly believed a day would come when none of my methodologies would work! I had learned to calm my mind with single commands, such as: “Reduce stress level by 30%,” with an immediate response. This year my mind found its limits of meditative tranquility. The impossible had become real. How have I managed from that point on?
Leaning on energy healing and grounding through nature
“Meditation is to be aware of every thought and of every feeling, never to say it is right or wrong, but just to watch it and move with it. In that watching, you begin to understand the whole movement of thought and feeling. And out of this awareness comes silence.” ~ Jiddu Krishnamurti
After years of practicing complicated energy healing, I did not foresee a day when my childhood mantra would become my only rescue. Lately, my meditation method has been walkabouts in nature, calmly, without too much hurry. Sitting down and admiring the lakes and trees if I feel tired. Taking pictures when I feel like it. If I do not want to bother, I leave my mobile in the car and my heavy Nikon at home. When I have tried to reach out in any way to my inner core, or the channels that connect us to the universe, I have felt broken. Something inside me, where I know our identity sits, has no longer been responding correctly.
I know, that trauma endured during the past year cannot be overlooked. Moreover, for the first time in my entire life, I see my body react appropriately in social events with my sympathy and empathy working as programmed while knowing that I have no possibility of reaching in for the deeper connection within me. Yes, that happens – and no, there are no treatments, medication, yogis, therapies, gurus or fix-it methods for me. Why? Because there is only one person, who has decades of history of what the identity matrix should look like. The one was looking back from my mirror. When I hit that point, I started to follow my earlier methodology learned during my peaks of fibromyalgia. Here is one of the basic practices:
Calming an overwhelmed mind:
Do not let thoughts occupy your mind even when they enter your mind.
When going gets tough, lie down (or sit comfortably) and focus on breathing. You do not have to think about any specific techniques, breathe and focus your vision, e.g., on a tree behind the window, a painting or a photograph you enjoy. If it helps, close your eyes and imagine a place you love (a beach, a peer, sitting on a river bank). Do not let thoughts occupy your mind even when they enter your mind. Keep your vision on the mark, and let the thoughts pass through you as if they were not part of you at all. Consider that all that clutter entering your mind is like leaves in the wind whirling across the street.
If you can make it in one piece for the next 10 minutes, you can make it another 10 minutes and so on. Until finally, you feel grounded enough to stand up and do something practical.
Learning a mantra:
You do not need a specific retreat to gain a mantra. You can associate any word or words to work with your mind and body. For example:
Breathing in think of the word: ‘relax.’
Breathing out think of the word: ‘calm.’
You can also choose any positive word, a phrase, or a short prayer like a Sanjeevini and repeat it in your mind when panic sets in.
Connecting with your inner circle of trust
Despite my continuous efforts, I hit a complete wall. I asked my friend, a skilled healer, to help me out – seeking out options when my road seemed blocked. Until one night, we both knew I had to replace energy connections from the very past causing my trauma and panic. It all happened late in the evening. I was sitting in my car thinking about how to do the impossible. I knew my mind was going to be my worst enemy. My day-to-day crust protecting my trauma was getting so thin that any meditation only triggered a worse impact. I had to fix the underlying matrix.
I took my healing wands and initiated a connection with my energy. Immediately the pain and trauma came over me like a moving train. I searched back to any thought that could help me get through the healing session. Suddenly I thought of the mantra I had learned as a child. I repeated it on the back of my mind over and over again. After two hours of fighting back the tears, pain, overwhelming emotions that seemed to come in from everywhere at once, I completed the healing. I felt as if a hurricane around me had withdrawn. I was completely exhausted. However, scanning my inner energy vortex, I found something substantial. A response. A new beginning.
The gift of winning your mind-battle
Your price in learning mind-calming techniques is that you can move through a trauma cycle without anyone else getting hurt on the way.
Meditation and mindfulness do help. There will be days when your mental strength is tested to the limit. There will be a battle, and you will feel like a pawn with your identity at stake. Make sure you build a practice and self-discipline to prepare for those days. Build up the armor your mind needs. Your price in learning mind-calming techniques is that you can move through a trauma cycle without anyone else getting hurt on the way. You may take damage, but you do not bring down others with you. When you do not isolate yourself from your circle of trust – you will always have people supporting you.
And remember: The only regret is regret itself! Winning a battle never feels like a victory, but it can feel like the sea calming after a stormy night.
Keep up the practice! And no, you do not even have to believe in it. You need to keep up the method of calming your mind. Your subconscious association and neural connections will work for you. Meditation is a powerful technology to create self-awareness and your place in the world.
“Half an hour’s meditation each day is essential, except when you are busy. Then a full hour is needed.” ~ Saint Francis de Sales
Transcendental meditation® TM ǀ https://www.tm.org/
Transcendental meditation ǀ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transcendental_Meditation
Mindfulness ǀ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness
The Science of Meditation ǀ https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/your-brain-as-laboratory-the-science-of-meditation/