Meditation can Help You Experience a Life You’re Truly Proud Of, and Excited By, with Arjuna Ishaya.
- 24 December 2019 24 December 2019
Arjuna Ishaya used to be an outdoor instructor in New Zealand until he discovered the joys of the Ishayas’ Ascension meditation in 2003. He sold up shop, became a Bright Path monk and travelled the world teaching. Ending up in North Yorkshire, he met a girl, married and settled down to have a family.
Arjuna lives overlooking the magnificent Swale which is cause for all manner of welcome distraction. He still travels often to teach and loves writing, whitewater kayaking, trail running and good food. His book “200% – An Instruction Manual for Living Fully” is available on Amazon around the world.
“I must reduce myself to zero.”
— Mahatma Gandhi, Indian political and spiritual leader
Often when people come to me to learn meditation, they ask about what they are going to get. I usually say nice things like less stress and struggle, better sleep and humour, more peace, rest, energy, purpose.
And it’s true – meditation gets you out of the negative and judgemental part of the mind: the part that loves to incessantly worry about things beyond your control, to get frustrated and be resentful when your plans are foiled (again), to blindly react in ways that you later regret.
Meditation gives you the beautiful ability to be present, something not many people are able to consistently do; nor are they particularly aware of the benefits of being present and alive to the one place where life actually is: Here and Now.
if you want to dedicate time to learning meditation, have a look at our meditation retreats.
John Lennon was so right when he supposedly said,
“Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans.”
Instead of pondering a past that has gone beyond your reach and being anxious for a future that might never happen and/or which you have no control over anyway, you get the ability to focus on the one moment you can actually do something about. This one.
Your reserves of energy are harnessed, not squandered. You gain effectiveness, efficiency and enjoyment of each and every moment. You can truly move forward with calm, clarity and creativity; you can truly be a support to the lives of your loved ones; you can truly live a life you’re proud of, and excited by. All by gaining distance from your own thoughts and emotions.
Losing A Great Many Things
But if you’re really interested in the truth of the matter, I would take you to one side and tell you, actually, you will get nothing from meditation. In fact, you will lose a great many things.
You lose your positions, your judgements, your need to secure, to over-control and to be right. You lose all your “shoulds”. You lose the grip your mind has on you – and it’s actually the loss of these things that brings peace and presence, not the gaining of anything.
Gandhi famously said many times in his life, “I must reduce myself to zero”.
Meditation is a reset, an emptying, a returning. It is the undoing of all internal limitation that reveals your true beauty and power beneath – the essence of who you already are, who you’ve always been but have been second guessing, trying and attempting to be someone you think you should be instead.
It’s an interesting paradox – the whole world seems to be telling you to be someone, and yet your greatest peace and your greatest potential comes from reducing yourself to Zero, to nothing.
When you do that, a higher power, the Self – whatever you want to call it; a much more wise, funny, and compassionate force than your small self could ever try to be – can flow through you unimpeded, complete, without edit.
This is how you have the greatest impact in your ability to make a difference; not by being someone, but by being no one, by getting out of Your way:
“The Universe is saying, ‘allow me to flow through you unrestricted, and you will see the greatest magic you have ever seen.’”
— Klaus Joehle, author
Give Yourself Away
Just for this moment, give all of your attention away.
Take your attention away from the selfish graspings of the mind, all the “shoulds”, all the insisting, the living in the past and the future. Place it all on the still, silent presence of Now that is beyond thought. There lies a field of quiet being, spacious ... eternally patient.
That still silent, aware presence within wants, needs and takes nothing beyond simple appreciation. In giving your attention to it, you are quite literally giving away all your limitations and selfishness. You are returning yourself to Zero.
The more you do it, the more that becomes the ground of your being; that lived sense of “I am that”. In giving up the smallness of your limitations, in fully tuning in to what this moment has to offer you, you step into living the greatest of lives.
Isn’t that a skill worth exploring further?
I say yes.