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Mindful : April 2018
A meditation space is a helpful support, but it can also become a crutch. Once you’ve been practicing for a while, you might start to find that you don’t actu- ally need a meditation space. All you really need is a body, mind, and breath. As soon as we dress up our meditation with candles, pretty pictures, and serene colors, we risk becoming overly attached to a particular feeling and meditating without that feeling can become even more of a burden. More often than not, the word “meditation” is accompanied by images of sunsets, serene landscapes, and stacked rocks (seriously, Google it). But it’s one thing to appreciate beauty in the world, and it’s another to depend upon that beauty as your incentive to be in the moment. Mind- fulness isn’t about drawing out and extending pleasant experiences, it’s about working directly and openly Don’t Get Too Attached In tighter spaces, you can get creative with storage: Slip your meditation cushion under a table and pull out as needed. with the not-so-pleasant stuff of life. When life gets hectic our first response is often to push away or shut out our present-moment experience. Meditation allows us to cultivate equanimity and clarity for the times when we face the inevitable chal- lenges of being human. A comfortable meditation space is kind of like having a set of training wheels: It provides us steadiness and support to learn and hone our tech- nique. It helps us to build confidence in our ability to work with whatever comes our way in life. Having that space to come back to helps to anchor our meditation practice. Unlike training wheels, the goal isn’t to move past needing a sitting space, but after a while you might notice that you no longer rely on that anchor—that you can meditate on the spot, wherever you happen to be. ● April 2018 mindful 45