Equanimity, Impermanence & Forms of Meditations

Day 6 on “Equanimity, Impermanence & Forms of Meditations” of “Meditation” Chapter

From “Remembering” Series

{Listen to audio with guided alignment at the end}

From the previous posts, we explore how the brains changes during meditation. Now, how do you be in meditative state? Do meditation comes in the form of just close your eyes and sit?

“Unless you observe yourself you can not come out of your problems”

This post will shed some light on the types of meditation, before that, let’s understand the meaning of equanimity and impermanence.

There are two words remind of me today, when I was watching animal planet’s documentary on how animals hunt and even eat its own kind. Realising how life is impermanent and reminding me to maintain equanimity.

What is impermanence?

“Everything changes and nothing lasts forever.”

Impermanence on Wikipedia: Impermanence, called anicca (Pāli) or anitya (Sanskrit) which is used extensively in Buddhism. Meaning nothing is permanent, things come and go. Yet, impermanence is permanent, the ongoing process of living and dying and time.

What is equanimity?

According to Wikipedia: “Equanimity (Latin: æquanimitas, having an even mind; aequus even; animus mind/soul) is a state of psychological stability and composure which is undisturbed by experience of or exposure to emotions, pain, or other phenomena that may cause others to lose the balance of their mind.”

Samuel Johnson defined equanimity as “evenness of mind, neither elated nor depressed.

Equanimity & Impermanence in Life

drops of water

Meditation helps to maintain equanimity when emotions arises, pleasant or unpleasant, gross or subtle. This is the practice of the awareness of impermanence, from the process of perception from the mind recognizes a stimulus to experience the emotions to coming out a reaction.

With Vipassana meditation, it trains my awareness to allow me to separate the one observing and the one reacting (experiencing the pain). Similar to when Echkart Tolle mentioned his defining awakening moment is when he realised he had this thought “I couldn’t live with myself any longer,” then he questioned, who is this “I”?

The best technique I have learned, from different forms of meditation, is to observe the “I”. Learning to sail in the ocean of life, realising when I am calm, I am sailing in the calm sea, when I am not, it is a rough sea. Thus, it is the observer who determines its own reality, as per the observer effect of Quantum physics. (Note: The observer effect is the fact that observing a situation or phenomenon necessarily changes it. )

On the other hand, being in meditative state, for me, means focusing on one thing at a time. Just as one of the classics of spiritual literature- Tao Te Ching written by Lao Tzu, described mental silence as empty the mind of all thoughts, which we can train the mind to be fully aware of one thing at a time.

In short, no matter what form of experiences, let’s welcome our full presence into it.

Forms of Meditations

Hereby ,sharing various forms of meditation practices (besides sitting meditation) based on my personal experience. There are active and passive meditations. At the same time, I believed sometimes, meditation can be guided, but it can also be intuitive based on personal needs. To know which types suit you, experience it yourself to find out.

1: Movement Meditation (Active / Dynamic Meditation)

Shaking Meditation

My favourite. There is no wrong or right way to shake, soften our knees and start to feel the bounce and let the vibration to spread all over the body. Shaking the body signals the brain to calm, relax and let go, besides activating the sympathetic system, shaking activates the lymphatic systems to help our body get rid of toxins.

Standing Meditation

It is also known as “Zhan Zhuang” which increases internal strength and physical strength. The goal is to unblock the stagnant energy and this helps to open the body’s energetic pathways thus rebalancing our energy.

Walking Meditation

This is when we focus on the sensations of the body or the feet as we walk, it is a practice to bring body and mind together. It helps us to develop concentrations. When we find ourselves in stressful situations, it is said to be more relaxing to walk than sitting. Start walking at a natural pace, paying attention to the sounds, vision by opening awareness around you then come back to to notice the sensations of your feet walking. Try barefoot walking touching the Earth to ground ourselves.

Dance Meditation

This is when we focus on the movement of our body and some may follow the rhythms of the music or some flow through the heart’s desire. As we dance freely, without steps or guidance, we dance from within, expressing our innermost emotions and ideas, at the same time, being aware of the one who observes.

Introducing one of my favourite active type of meditation which I experienced in India: OSHO Active Meditation of 5 stages: from intense chaotic breathing to letting emotions out to jumping with ‘Hoo’ sound to freezing to celebratory dancing and in the end with stillness.

Qi Gong

It is a set of practice with slow gentle movement to cultivate life force and energy. With the goal to integrate vital energy into the body with postures, movements, and deep breathing. I personally find it very healing for the body and energy field.

Daily Activities

Meditative states can even happen during our daily activities when we are fully focusing on one thing at a time: when we are washing dishes, folding clothes, sweeping the floor, cycling, hiking or swimming etc.

2: Breath-Focused Meditation

Where we focus our attention on our breath, inhale and exhale deeper, increasing the oxygen intake in our body. This is helpful to slow down our brain waves from beta state to alpha state. Thus, some would recommend to breath deeply for some period of time before entering meditation. Find out more on the ways to practice as there are tons, experience to see which suits you best.

3: Mantra Meditation

Where we chant certain mantra (OM) or words to focus during the meditations. This helps to concentrate which some find it helpful to ‘silence’ the mind chatter. Referring to the “Silence & Sound” Chapter, where we hum or chant to enter into meditative state. Read more on mantras and chants here.

4: Mirror Meditation

When we look into our eyes in the mirror as a reflection to show you what you need to ‘see’ or ‘listen’ to yourself. Mirror reflects our innermost voice and needs, as we spend more time to just look into the eyes, we are creating intimacy with self as we become aware of the our emotions and thoughts. Set the space, set the intention and tune in . Be open and be mindful if there are any voices of critiques or appreciation. Spend at least 5 minutes and discover what the mirror can teach you.

5: Visualization / Mental Rehearsal

This is when we close our eyes to tune inward to imagine our desired moments with clear intention and elevated emotions. Where we picture images, ideas, feel the sensations, listen to the sound, and perhaps affirm the mental picture. It is best to do it when the mind is calm and body is relax. Like how athletes would practice mental rehearsal daily of them winning the game, at times before their practices and before the game, which reinforces the reality they wish to create.

May you be reminded that life is impermanence, and may we enjoy the presence of equanimity.

Awareness of impermanence and appreciation of our human potential will give us a sense of urgency that we must use every precious moment.

Dalai Lama

Breath deep,

Abhya

Published by Abbhya 阿比亚 Pan Vic Qi

One sharing and supporting unity consciousness

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: