I recently heard this Zen saying which I adapted and adopted with good results. It now goes:
- Meditate for 2 minutes every morning. If you don't have time, meditate for an hour.
Making this a commitment is a good way to get a practice going, as you only require a minimum of 2 minutes every morning. I have learned that the intent to meditate is much more important than chasing the fruits of meditation, which I'm not going to delve into. The fruits are simply the spoils that give us the love to continue and come as needed or deserved. Usually when you start such a practice schedule or introduce meditation into your life as an uncertain soul, you will find you need to lean on will power a bit. For this, 2 minutes is an easy commitment to keep to.
In the Buddhist Insight Meditation (Vipassana) it is taught that meditation is something you start over all the time. This can be seen in a single meditation session as much as it can be seen in your overall meditation practice. It can even be seen in the continuous death/rebirth cycle our souls are passing through. We start, and then we end. After this we start again.
Picture a basic breath awareness meditation where you watch your breath and then as thoughts come along, simply acknowledge the thought and return to your breathing. When meditating as human beings, unintended thoughts tend to interrupt your focus frequently. The point here is to remember to simply acknowledge the thought, forgive the thought, forgive yourself for being distracted by the thought, and calmly return to your breath awareness.
So spiritual practice is less about labour and more about intent. Try and find 2 minutes every morning to do a simple breath awareness meditation. Make this your practice. If on one morning you find yourself having more time and wanting to do a longer session, do so gently. Remember to keep your minimum requirement to the 2 minutes of awareness each morning. Over time the length of your practices will tend to gently increase as you discover the joy's of meditation, sometimes decreasing a bit to fit life's ways, sometimes changing on a day to day basis. Simply choose afresh each time what you feel like the particular morning, staying committed to doing at least 2 minutes! On days where it drops right down to the minimum 2 minutes, remember to stay unattached to the length of time. Fruits stem from, but are separate from practice.
Forgiveness is actually a desired practice. If something in your life interrupts your thoughts/practice, the act of forgiving yourself will help towards healing that problem more than any other attempt you could make. So forgiveness should be welcomed and not avoided.
Thus, it's good to lose yourself into a train of thought, or have little or less time to meditate. They are all opportunities to practice unconditional forgiveness, which surpasses the power of the practice.
When you do have more time to meditate,
be thankful for it happens by grace.
On days you don't have time,
For you have an opportunity to
For you have an opportunity to
God Bless You!