Habit.at meditation is named for the notion that our habits are our habitat, or how what we do repeatedly creates the theme of our lived experience. I’ve written much here about building the helpful habit of meditation but I’ve realised I need to point to an important distinction about exactly what habit I’m suggesting building.
The habit I am pointing to building is not in fact meditation, it is the habit of remembering to turn to meditation. Meditation is a word that points to a lived experience, I don’t want to muddy this with the misrepresentation that it is nothing more than a moldy old thought habit dredged up again and again as some kind of skill to acquire, state of mind to achieve, or an activity to ‘succeed’ or ‘fail’ at.
The key is to try it for yourself, it must be an experience that is approached with a simple curiosity to discover what is self evident about your direct experience free from the layers of concepts we have acquired through the experience of living among adult humans since childhood. The key is to continue approaching experience with this freshness, this lived curiosity.
Sitting or somehow being upright is suggested simply to lesson the likelihood of falling asleep. Focusing on the breath is suggested simply because the breath is a consistent experience and therefore easy to refer to. The breath is also a factor in bringing the body+mind into a relaxed state. Thoughts do not need to be ‘gotten rid of’, what is important is the attention, it is a turning of attention away from thoughts to investigate what thoughts arise within. If you are a beginner at this, its helpful to begin when you are in a relaxed mood as more challenging ‘thought-moods’ really test our ability to turn the attention away from them, or to put it another way, suffering thoughts can be hard to relax into once inflamed. Any meditation exercise that uses an object to focus on is just an exercise to notice that you have attention, and that attention can be turned away from the stream of self related thoughts. It is natural that eventually you will notice that you are noticing that you notice, it will emerge that your attention is Attended to.