Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Green Tea Meditations

I haven't been able to update this blog in sometime. My reason, as always, is living a busy lifestyle. Having a fast pace life filled with work, socialising, friends, lovers, taxes and the various other worries that preoccupy us can be a distraction from actually attaining what is truely of worth; knowing yourself.

One of my favourite thinkers among theologians (and philosophers) is Kierkegaard. One very important, yet beautifully simple thing he asks us to remember is "don't forget to love yourself". It sounds obvious enough, but how many of us properly understand its meaning on a subjective level? How many of us can truthfully say "I know what it means to really love myself"?

When we fill our lives with all the distractions life throws, offers and demands of us we forget to remember how to know ourselves. Engaging with the reality of you is essential in living a fulfilling existence.

Now, upon reading this, please don't rush out and try to indulge your every desire. This is not learning to know and love yourself, but rather another set of distractions. What I recommend is to take some time absorbing yourself in the small things, like eating, washing, and, best of all in my opinion, sitting in silence with a hot pot of Jasmine tea.

So, while learning to appreciate the feel of cool water on your face after you wake up, being aware of the food you're eating and paying attention to brewing the perfect cup of Jasmine, you'll also be discovering who you are. While you're sitting in solitude, absorbed in silence, sipping your tea and watching the first winter snows fall, please don't forget to love yourself.

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

A Quick Introduction

I was first exposed to Buddhism and its various meditative processes when I began my training in Shaolin Gong fu at the Shaolin Temple UK []. It was here that I came to understand how important meditation is for the individual. These first experiences were, and still are, precious gems to me. Now, at the age of twenty two, I look back to the first time, as a young boy, I sat cross legged at my master's feet and devoured his teachings.

But what is meditation, and how are we to define it? provides this meaning:
1)The act of meditating. 2)Continued or extended thought; reflection; contemplation. 3)Transcendental meditation. 4)devout religious contemplation or spiritual introspection.
A myriad of things could be considered meditation then. There are psychological explanations to fit modern materialist based understandings of humanity, and these do have their place. However, in the end, meditation is something very subjective. This requires us to create our own definitions of meditation according to how we determine its uses.

What I hope to do is give my view on what meditation is and how it can transform our lives, personalities and our very nature. I want to examine the many faces of meditative practices, from its Western roots in Christian mysticism to the more common ideas found in Eastern philosophies, such as Taoism and Buddhism. I really hope to show that meditation is a vital part to discovering who we are, enriching our lives and our minds no matter what your spiritual beliefs are.

Walking together in Buddha's gentle rain, our robes are soaked through.