Points to Ponder: 20th June, 2018
What is the purpose of meditation? Whenever this question is put to us, the first thing that pops up is peace and happiness. Definitely each one of us is looking for peace and happiness. But the important question to address is what kind of peace and happiness? Is it peace and happiness of a momentary, fleeting kind or peace and happiness of a lasting kind? It of often said that meditation is to the soul what medication is to the body. So it is pertinent to ask oneself if I would like the idea to be on a medication which would only give me temporary relief until I take the medication? Certainly not. I would like the medication to cure me. Same goes with meditation. The purpose of meditation is to cure the soul and restore it to its former healthy self. I, the soul am essentially peaceful, loveful, happy and stable. And meditation should serve the purpose of reinstating me to my former self.
Now, if we look at meditation in such light, the first question to ask is what is the cause of my peaceless, unhappy state today? I will relate a very interesting incident to you in this regard. Once a lady came upto me and said that I have heard that meditation can solve all problems. I said yes and asked her to attend the sessions. And what she asked immediately after that made me smile. She said, so u mean meditation can stop my husband from listening to my mother-in law?. 🙂 Then I told her, we will begin from the beginning dear sister. First we will have to understand that the problem is not the mother in law or the husband or the husband listening to the mother in law. The problem lies in how I perceive the whole thing. Meditation cannot change the circumstances or people around me. Because the truth is that they are never the problem. But meditation can change the way I perceive them and think about them. How I perceive something is a product of my belief systems, experiences, memories and information. So accordingly, the first step to meditation is revisiting our old belief systems and revaluating our memories and experiences in this new light. So meditation starts with true knowledge. Then this knowledge has to shift from just an understanding to a knowing, realisation and becoming. This is achieved by reflecting and contemplating on new knowledge so much so that it is internalized and then, from the new being arises new thought, and new behaviour which in turn elicits new responses and a new life.