A young woman was in doubt about how to repeat the meditation sound. Would it be better to involve muscles and the tongue in the repetition of the sound, almost as if she were saying it aloud? Or would it be better merely to think the sound in her mind, without trying to make it distinct? Her uncertainty might reflect her relationship to herself and her life.
Last week we started an M-1 course at the Acem House in New Delhi. Each time the main challenge that the course leaders have faced is to make the participants reflect on their own experience of meditation rather than only discuss what is theoretically correct or incorrect. A fact that becomes clear to the group very soon is that there is more to the meditation than telling ourselves “just repeat the sound and let all thoughts come and go.”
When the longing for nirvana becomes too strong, we sometimes encounter the thought goblin, writes Dr. Øyvind Ellingsen. Recent research confirms that the natural resting state of the mind is not emptiness, but a tendency to wander.