What Is A Good Meditation?
Sat talks about having a good meditation vs. a bad meditation and how to deal with thoughts in meditation.
Sat: What is a good meditation? What is your concept of good meditation?
Answer: For me is when I feel my existence or touch my existence.
Sat: Which is what?
Answer: Almost like a “no mind” state. Like an emptiness. Is that a good meditation?
Sat: Yes, of course it is a good meditation when you are quiet. But, if you were not quiet, would that be a bad meditation?
Answer: Probably not!
Sat: Why not?
Answer: Because I feel like at least I tried.
Sat: You get points for effort (laughs). Of course we know what meditation means by now; it is our state of true Self. But to me, a meditation also is equally as good when the thoughts come, and they come, and they come, and you find yourself in imagination, and you know how to transcend it again, and again, and again, and again. And the reason I call that a good meditation is because, that is how you really erase [thoughts; you erase them] by letting them come and being able to be okay about it, being okay that you have thoughts. Because you are not afraid, you are not pushing them, and you are not condemning yourself; you are just watching yourself involve and un-involve, involve and un-involve [and so on] until our life becomes a meditation where we know how to transcend thoughts.
So, your meditation in which you say [that you experience] emptiness is fantastic but equally fantastic is when you are bombarded with thoughts and you catch yourself and you relax, you catch yourself and you relax. This way we don't have a concept of what the best meditation is. To Me, when you lose consciousness, that is not a good meditation because you are not being conscious to release yourself. We can only release ourselves of bondage by being conscious. Does everybody get it?
Bahar: I feel close to what You are saying; I am able to relax a lot more in meditation now and when the thoughts come it is this little subtle dance. It is like some thoughts are here, but it is not like a struggle. I don't feel pressure from the thoughts.
Sat: That is the aim; to be able to have a bad meditation but be relaxed about it. So, when you open your eyes, and life throws things at you, because of the good meditation, which everybody calls a bad meditation, you've learned to be able to relax. Yes, with practice, the struggle becomes less and less. In the beginning, there is a struggle. [You say to yourself,] “Oh, it happened again,” but then even if you get disgusted with yourself, you watch yourself get disgusted and eventually [you] will relax and let it be.
March 28, 2022 - After the Livestream
Sharing (based on the After the Livestream discussion immediately above): Thank You so much, You answered my question, which was that thoughts come and you keep going back, and going back and it doesn’t matter as long as we are in peace? I’m ok with it, I just let go of it.
Sat: [Chuckling] It’s true, it’s true that a lot of times we want, [as] the thinker, which is inseparable from the mind, to do the Stop and that becomes a struggle, until we don’t do it anymore. I am glad that the talk I had yesterday helped you because it is very important. I want everybody to listen to it, it was from Monday night. Until we get to the point that we realize that the mind thinks and sometimes forcefully and sometimes not, sometimes we can achieve silence much easier and sometimes not. But the Art of Stop Meditation is to let it be, to not alter the position of thinking. And just shift the attention without any struggle either to the silence, or just watching without movement. Then after a while it dies down.
And there are meditations [in which the thoughts] will not die down because whatever it is that you did in the day time stirred your mind. If in the daytime you were too active or too stressed out [for instance], in your meditation thoughts could come in a series that may not have anything to do with your activities of the day.
So, have some compassion for it and let it be, like you said.
As I was saying last night, we can’t measure a good meditation just by sitting in silence and not having thoughts. But I also measure it [by] how many times you can shift the attention without struggle, to Me this is a huge success.
Is there anybody else that has a little bit of struggle going on with Staying or with the thoughts?
Sharing: My dear Sat, Holding my concentration has always been a challenge for me. A few years ago, when I let go of the struggle of keeping my attention and being at peace with letting it go and allowing it to come back, it felt like a big leap in my practice. It was a huge turning point for me to learn that it’s ok, to not fight with it and to just bring it back gently. To this day, holding the attention is not easy for me.
Sat: Yes, it’s a very fine line. But I can assure you that it is much easier than everything we have done. The problem is that in life we were not taught to BE. We were just not taught to BE, we were taught to not BE- that is the problem of the personality, because it doesn’t know anything else but to become and to be thinking of this and that. But once you have a glimpse of … not the thinker wanting to be the silence, but the silence being the silence, you achieve a big, big jump. And it is not something that I can teach, it is by trial and error that we fall in the right rhythm of it.
Right now, at this moment, let’s everybody be quiet! (Everyone remains silent for a few minutes) We don't even need the attention, when I say shift the attention, really it is [just] to give you something to understand what I am saying. It is even easier than shifting the attention but I have no choice but to say shift the attention. How hard is it to just BE? Let’s do it again together.
You don’t have to prepare to BE.
(Remains silent) It wasn’t that the thinker and the mind started to follow the attention or the attention did this or that. When I say attention, attention is only to wake you up [to see] that the mind and the thinker are having a battle, but in the State of Being, you don’t even need attention, you just relax and sink. And it sinks by itself, when I say sink, don’t think you have to do something about it, it is much simpler than every word that I am telling you.
Let’s do it again.
With the eyes open BE!
With the eyes shut BE!
BE is not addressed to the thinker.
BE is a bell of awakening.
It is like somebody rings the bell by your ears. It is not somebody going someplace or somebody pushing something. (Remains silent) As far as attention goes, attention subsides in that simplicity. So use the word “attention” - every time I [say it] use it as a bell by your ears to relax and let it sink. In the beginning, there has to be a lot of words to point [with] because the mind is really ignorant of an inner life, but as we advance, as we are peeling the onion as they say, and we see the simplicity. Even the method that we are doing, it’s even simpler than that, and then it keeps going purer.
So you experience what I am saying and then the attention realizes that there are thoughts, etc., it is totally ok! It is totally ok, by your okayness, you transcend it, you go to the State of Being again.
Once you look at the mess in the mind and you are ok with it, what happens? There is no argument, instead you sink and the struggle ends. But the problem comes when we want to struggle, in other words, we are not letting go of being okay- that’s when we feel uncomfortable. But believe Me, every one of us will have mastery over that because there is nothing like falling and getting up, failing and winning. This process of both sides gets us to the right movement, the right place.
Are there any other sharings or questions?
Question: Right now, that You said BE, it was really easy to BE. The first time didn’t happen to me but the second time and third time I experienced to Be. But when You are not the one who is telling us to BE and I am the one who is telling me to BE, who is that person who is telling me to BE?
Sat: You don’t tell yourself to BE; I am talking to you, so there are two individuals. But when you are on your own, you just remember, you don’t tell yourself to BE, but you can be aware of not being. When you are aware of not being, realize how simple it is to BE. There is no conversation for BEING, but there are a lot of thoughts to becoming.
Again, you guys have to contemplate on what I am saying because by Me talking to you does not mean that you will get it, you have to get it in a way that it stays by your understanding. It is not something you have to put the phone down and go do. It’s just when it sinks in you, it does the work.
Question: You just said the problem is when we want to struggle. Can You please explain what that means?
Sat: Yes, there are times, that I am sure you have all experienced, where you see that you are struggling but you continue to solve it on the level of the mind and the thinker. You know it’s not comfortable, you know you are having a hard time, and you know [that] the solution is just letting, letting be, but [there is] still something, [there is] some momentum that goes on and on, I just want you to be aware of that.
Sharing: Dear Sat, I would like to go back to what Nilu was saying. I have been practicing just being ok with my mind going and what really helped me is when I zoomed in on the moment that I become aware that attention had wavered. If I don’t impurify that moment of recognition, at that moment “I am,” I am back. So I learned to enjoy that moment that I become aware that I was gone. That moment back is Just Be, unless I begin to struggle with it; “Why was my attention gone? Why this and that?” So recognizing that moment has really helped me
Sat: Yes, the moment you realized and you just stayed as Be - you stayed, that’s all that happened. You recognized it, you let it go, you recognized it, you let it go. Yes, I see that everyone is finding their most comfortable way with the practices. Like I said, have patience and continue, even at the worst, you are doing much better than before you even started this journey.
Question: My dear Sat, is there going to be a time where the thoughts no longer rise?
Sat: Listen, the mind thinks and it needs to think because the mind sends a signal for the body to get up, to make a decision, to eat, etc. So, when you say there is no thought, what do you mean by that? But I can assure you that the stories according to the very highly evolved, the stories are not there, because you are awakened to the fact that the unreal is just unreal. Now, if the thought comes, it doesn’t penetrate because the practice has been so profound by then, unless there is something that is spontaneous. Like I said, the thoughts come from a pure mind, it comes from a subtle mind, it doesn’t come from a mind full of concepts at that time, so do they think?
Yes, the thinking happens, but the quality of thinking is different, it is spontaneous, it is detached, it is without a want, it is free! This is the difference between the mind that is full of vasanas, tendencies and the one that is free of it, but yes, the thinking still happens.
3.29.22 - US Chat
Question: I have a question. We talked a little bit about clearing and silencing the mind and not thinking. And, I was trying it. I kept saying, “Don't think.” But, saying “don't think” means it was a thought. So, it was this back and forth that I am trying to figure how to …
Sat: Yes, we talked about it last night. When you say, “don't think,” it is like saying “think” because it comes from the same source. There is one thought that says “don't” and there is one thought that comes anyway. When I say, “go beyond the mind,” [it] means have nothing to do with it. Let the mind think. Let the thinking come. You are not the thinking. So, what do you care what happens outside? But, you as an individual, when you have the thoughts, what you do is just relax and not mind it. Do not resist it. No resistance! But, at the same time you don't mix with it. You don't give it more energy.
In other words, the thoughts come, and they are disturbing, interesting, loving, hating, … whatever it is, it comes. You as a thinker, you as Ahmad, you are aware of it. So what? As long as you don't let it bother you, when we are okay with something, that something becomes powerless. It takes two to tango. It takes two to fight. So, when you put your energy into not wanting to have thoughts, you are actually giving thoughts energy.
So, the first thing you do is to relax, take a few deep breaths, and after every set of breaths, you watch yourself sink. Because the breath is connected to the mind; for example, when you are angry [your breathing gets intense] or when we are scared. But when we are peaceful … there are times when I have to gasp for air because the heartbeat has gone so low because the mind has stopped being entertained.
So, what you do is just sit and relax, with nice music if you like, and take a few deep breaths. When you take the breath in, which is gentle and deep, be conscious of it and then when you let it out, be conscious of it and look inwardly. You will see the energy here (Sat is pointing to the mind) is beginning to descend; your Being begins to sink and then, you become aware of a silence that is you but, then it rises. The thinker rises, Ahmad or Sat rises to the mind, the energy [rises]. So what? Watch it go up, and there is a thought and just relax again as if it is not happening to you. By practicing this you become an expert and what happens is, you can pick and choose your thoughts instead of the thoughts picking and choosing you. And because of that, it brings a peace that has nothing to do with what comes and what goes. But it needs being Present, to be interested, and to not give up.
But again, never push a thought away or say “go away,” or even embrace it. We are a watcher, like we are watching this candle. We are not going to analyze the candle's movement. We are just watching. That's it. If you just watch, you find silence. If you don't believe Me, look at the table or a candle and just be the watcher and let it move, let it dance. Then, we become aware of a silence that is the base to all the thoughts and in reality, we are that silence. The thoughts are just happening; instead of being the reverse, us being the thoughts and the silence happening now and then. It is not like this at all.
So, I am glad you are asking, because it shows interest and when there is an interest, there is a grace to unfold it. That happened to Me. I showed interest, and the way to do it just began to manifest itself; for instance, Stop Meditation came to Me in public.
April 6, 2022 - After the Livestream