**This is my own interpretation progressing from the early stages of meditation practice. None of this should be interpreted is a substitute for actual medical advise. I am not a health care professional. Nor am I promoting meditation as superior to the therapeutic guidance of a professional human councilor. I AM suggesting meditation is worth exploring more than a few times. Here’s why… again my own interpretations which may or may not be proven by science backed papers I’ve read or ideas I’ve gathered from ancient to popular online sources 🤓 Enjoy!
We are complex beings. Our bodies are multi-part systems, functioning along side and (mostly) in cooperation with multiple other systems. Almost all of this is happening without any effort on our part (it’s automatic) One of those automated systems is our Mind.
Our Minds run routine programs based on our unique history of reactions and responses. Largely these ideas are modeled to you, formed thru lived experiences and a lot of it… is belief driven. All of which are reprogramable. That’s right! You can calmly witness what’s coming up and there afterwards began the process of dismantling and reprograming with your present and compassionate awareness!! Amazing!! 👏
Your Mind is Totally Hackable!!
Our left side of the brain controls the right side of our bodies and also plays the role of reasoning and Logic. Likewise our right brain controls the left body and also plays the role of creativeness and interpreting our Emotions. What we want and how best to get it, more or less. Somewhere in between is what I like to call the Judge. Logic makes its case, Emotion makes its case, the Judge considers all arguments and decides what you will be doing. This is happening very quickly most of the time. Sometimes we get stuck and the Judge rules in favor of half baked ideas. There are many reasons for this like pain induced brain fog for one oddly specific example. Mostly our past experiences along with how we see the world and ourselves have shaped our ideas. The brain being dominantly automatic is simply running well established programs. Programs designed to keep us safe and alive. Any perceived threat can trigger our inner alarm system and a default fight, flight, freeze, fawn or forget response is activated. Our brains can even create an incessant loop of repetitive thoughts. Hello intrusive friend! 👋
Managing the mind and body is all about balance. Bringing Logic and Emotion together at the same time. Remember there is a left, right and somewhat centered part of the brain along with a very loud alarm system. When the alarm is triggered the Judge struggles to well, judge and a rescue team (fight, flight, freeze, fawn, forget) is called in to protect you from the very real or perceived danger. Though this is an automated state it is also an imbalanced state. We want to bring the mind and body back into equilibrium.
Interrupting the Regularly Scheduled Program
There are tools we could use to assist us into a more meditative state, such as equally counted In and Out breaths, listening to Binary Beats, gazing into Symmetrical Art or Nature. You could also engage your body using your left and right hands and feet in unison like walking, biking, yoga, swimming, yard work, sweeping, washing dishes, crocheting… driving! (Begs the questions… Is this the reason for Road Rage!? If Emotion and Logic are now sitting in the same car, at the same time… then is it traffic that’s so triggering or is it that Emotion came along for the ride too?) Insert Radio HERE… I digress.
These are examples of physically encouraging our brain parts to work in harmony. Thru unison tasks with our breaths, ears, eyes and touch senses you can gain some control over your automatic systems and will then be better able to help rebalancing your brain, calming your body and even reducing pain! We can quite literally induce the balancing of our brain by using both the left and right sides of our body simultaneously and repetitively. This is probably a good reason why breathing meditations are widely encouraged. “Just simply focus on your In and Out breaths.”
These Tools and Activities also have in Common… Raising Your Awareness!!
This new found awareness seems to be trouble for many beginning Meditators. We don’t want to be with those thoughts or become MORE aware of the uncomfortable feelings coming up in us. We want to be distracted again, right away! Just Breathe! We might have even triggered a loop…. and now we can’t stop feeling or thinking about it. Congratulations! You have just become aware of an imbalance within. Both Logic (who also has lots of problems left to solve) and Emotion are simultaneously competing for YOUR ATTENTION…. NOW that they have it… it’s extra LOUD!
Your Attention?? Who’s Attention You Ask?
Yes… YOU are observing your Body, your Mind’s fears, doubts, worries etc AND your Emotions! You are now aware of all of this. You are the Observer. When you know you are the Observer… you naturally Observe. You have awareness and presence. The Present Observer is like the Meditative Observer… it’s just that our awareness is either focused on observing something in our outer environment OR focused on our inner environment 🤔
The Balancing of Two Worlds
Our focus of inner and outer awareness oscillates naturally (automatically). We react, we respond. Emotion, Logic. We are sort of genetically destined towards logical thinking though… right handedness for example. Right hand dominance is also suggested to be a result of generations after generations carrying our young on the left, over our hearts. This would also be very pleasing to the left Emotion-driven side of the body Humans are so cute!!
The practice of meditation is You, The Awareness, that decided to sit the body down and give the mind and emotions the audience of a Non-Judge over and over. That’s your practice. Non Judge and Judge are aware in their own right, Emotions are signals to pay attention and our thoughts are records of meaning you assigned or adopted about you and the world around you. You are the awareness of those thoughts and feelings that call for your attention. This too is why we breathe… bringing balance to the body, the mind and to let the discomfort move out thru our breaths. In - we reach it, Hold - we grab it, Out - we release it.
When we don’t feel great something is definitely off. We know that but perhaps we don’t always think of it as being off balance. That is exactly what is going on and we can learn to recognize it in ourselves. This is the challenge we are all tasked with. Life is going to knock you off balance! We will always be seeking equilibrium. Your own two feet and the head on your shoulders are always working together to maintain this upright and more balanced way of being. Let the Mind follow the Body (Remind me now) Let the Body follow the Mind (Remember this?) This IS breathing in and breathing out. Let the In and Out breath bring you into balance. In, Out. Life source in, Now let that old crap out.
If you are not having these loving whole body breathing moments and you’re feeling worse…
Do NOT continue to torture yourself. That’s the opposite to our GOAL of Self Compassion. If you are not feeling strong enough to be a Compassionate Witness to your own inner truths passing by… come back when it’s safer to be vulnerable again. In time you’ll recreate that safe inner space for all of yourself to show up to be heard and seen… Then your Judge will be better able to understand Emotion and Logic now that their unresolved cases have started to be sorted thru.
I have trust you can discover for yourself what methods will help you to bring balance to your systems. I also hope to have encouraged you with extra examples of why meditations are such an effective route for Self Compassion and relief.
May YOU regularly interrupt…
Your regularly scheduled programing!
#conqueryourmind #IntrusiveThoughts #Anxiety #Pain