This week’s challenge was to practice mindfulness while chanting or praying — to keep your focus only on the words of the chant or prayer or vision and to notice what intruded.
I didn’t manage to do a separate chant ahead of time so I combined tonight’s practice with the mindfulness practice. I actually always try to stay mindful when I chant so I really just added trying to simultaneously stay mindful and yet notice what crossed my mind. I wasn’t very mindful tonight.
I was interested to see that the thoughts that arose related to launching this prayer effort. I’ve been really excited because being a part of moving toward peace has been very important to me for a long time. Yet I don’t have the feeling so far that very many others are excited, so at first my thoughts jumped to feeling that this has failed (even though I know that it takes time to launch something like this and I have a lot of work still to do about getting the word out).
I pulled my thoughts back to the chant and then they wandered to the point, six or seven years back, when a dear friend–with excellent skills at using right listening to guide her friends deeper into their own hearts–led me to create a workshop I called Journey to Peace along with realizing that I seriously want to be assisting the world toward peace. I haven’t taught the workshop in a while and I thought I should dust it off and bring it out again.
I don’t feel there’s a deep analysis to do about these thoughts as they swirled around the launching of this project and why I started; doesn’t seem too surprising given what and why I was chanting. Sometimes I do note deeper issues like some part of me that wants to distract me from the possibility of being peaceful, at ease and happy…. but not tonight.
The last few minutes I managed to successfully use my trick of watching the words float across my inner visual “screen” to stay focused only on the chant. That, of course, was when I finally dropped into a deeper and more peaceful space.
Tell me about your experience with the challenge. Or just how it feels to participate in meditating.
- Prayers, visioning, chanting – are they something? Part 1 (bluegrassnotes.wordpress.com)
- Collective Prayer Sunday – let’s pray for peace together-ish (bluegrassnotes.wordpress.com)
- Praying for me or thee (bluegrassnotes.wordpress.com)