I call the it the plateau. It happens to the best of us, especially in the beginning.When I began meditating I ran into this plateau and thought- I can't be the only one!
Does this sound familiar?
First, you gently ease into our meditation space, light the incense, and comfortably seat yourself. Taking great care, you take our mala from its pouch, remind yourself of beautiful intentions and begin your japa and nothing. This old friend that first inspired you, called to you, even walked around with you all day while you did our dishes, brushed your teeth, focused you on stillness and awareness somehow feels....dare I say it?.....stale.
We can often struggle as our minds wander into the abyss of swirling thoughts. This mantra feels off, it must be this mantra. Maybe, just maybe I should be working with a new one. Maybe if I tried Ganesh instead he would aid me in overcoming certain obstacles. Maybe "On Namah Shivaya" will bring the transformation I need. Or....
Maybe it needs to be worked through. Maybe that is the lesson. Maybe the very expectation of clarity needs to be let go, tossed in with the before-mentioned swirling abyss and simply witnessed. Meditating isn't the clarity, it is the journey to the clarity. The mantra is your vehicle. Watch the scenery as you drive through, stay in the car and keep riding towards your destination. You may or may not reach it in this life, but isn't the landscape just lovely?
The remedy? Don't exchange it!!!
Be kind to yourself. Let the thoughts come and let the thoughts go. Let them tease. Smile kindly as you would to a naughty child. Stick to your mantra. Don't give in! Say it with all the love in your heart. Very often we give up just before we are about to succeed. Soon you will find the plateau crumbling, your are free falling, soaring.....free.
Original Artwork by Bevin Valentine Photography