Pema Chodron has spent a lifetime teaching others how to
live with peace in the present moment. Here are three insights from Pema on why
meditation may be the most effective way we can help ourselves find that peace.
1. “Meditation practice isn’t about trying to throw ourselves away and become something better, it’s about befriending who we are.”
We all want to become better people- but that doesn’t mean
rejecting who we already are. As Pema explains in her guidebook, “5 Reasons to
Meditate,” meditation is not a “magic makeover” but rather a slow
transformation that allows us to grow in peace with our whole selves- not just
the “bad” or the “good” parts!
2. “What's encouraging about meditation is that even if we shut down, we can no longer shut down in ignorance. We see very clearly that we're closing off. That in itself begins to illuminate the darkness of ignorance.”
In addition to helping us grow as humans and spiritual
beings, meditation can help us better understand our thought patterns. As Pema
points out, meditation allows us to participate alongside our minds as
impartial spectators, naming our thoughts for what they are, without
necessarily trying to alter or cancel them out.
3. “It's helpful to remind yourself that meditation is about opening and relaxing with whatever arises, without picking and choosing.”
Meditation can also help us in our struggle against uncertainty about the past or the future by focusing on our attention on the exact present and accepting all thoughts as they come. As Pema states in her meditation guidebook, “We learn to just be here… and we have a lot of resistance to just being here!”
Finally, it is important to remember that anyone can benefit from meditation, regardless of personal background or experience… in fact; Pema Chodron was a schoolteacher and mother of two before becoming a Buddhist nun!
Read more about meditation benefits and techniques:
Read more about Pema Chodron and her meditation teachings: