Many people think they can’t meditate. Maybe it’s not that they can’t meditate, rather the way they have been instructed to meditate doesn’t resonate with their Soul!
In the past, much of what was taught about meditation came from a restrictive mindset, often couched in needing to be more disciplined or committed to be a good yogi or person.
Restrictive meditation is a form of meditation where concentration is emphasized and epitomized. One is to focus on a singular object to the exclusion of all other thoughts. It can almost be described as the “sit down-shut up-suck up” approach to meditation. Clearing the mind of all thoughts is the guiding edict. And while the goal is to really experience whatever you are focusing on, whether it's your breath, a specific word, or a mantra in order to reach a higher state of being, the result is often a feeling of defeat because total concentration is almost impossible for most of us.
Invitational Meditation, on the other hand, offers a completely different approach.
- You don’t have to sit still cross-legged to meditate. In fact, you don’t have to sit at all, and for some, your knees will thank you! You can choose to slouch, lie down or walk around. Think about it: Nothing in this universe is ever still. Why do we need to be stifling still to connect to the Divine? Meditate in a way or position that fits you that day.
- You don’t have to quiet your mind, make your mind blank, or get rid of your thoughts. Nope! Give your mind permission to run free and expand into the vastness of the universe. This freedom allows space for untold ideas, insights, and expansion to take place. Rather than confine or restrict, free the mind, which will inadvertently invite the body to free itself up as well.
- Give up thinking you need to give up your “ego”. Your ego is your sense of self. Sure, an ego can become inflated and self-absorbed; however, the ego’s innate function is that of our survival and growth. There is no need to kill your individuality in order to meditate. Celebrate your unique self as you seek to discover a relationship with your higher, brighter, best Self. Do you!
- Shame less! Invite yourself to notice when you begin to impose some rule, suppression, shame, judgment on yourself, and go within. Take an inquiry into your meditation. There are no rules or restrictions as to what you wonder upon. Rather, one of the yogic niyamas, known as Svadhyaya or self-study and self-reflection, is all about you asking deep purposeful questions to and about yourself. It’s during your dedicated meditation times you will discover the ability to see, on intuit, the meaning of life’s lessons, receive instructional-type messages or experience a peace that passes your current understanding.
- Guilt no more. If you don’t receive insights, messages, or a sense of peace, let that be ok too.
Here’s the real benefit of Invitational Meditation — it’s an invitation. As a verb “invite” means to make a polite, formal, or friendly request to (someone) to go somewhere or to do something. Think of your meditation “someone” being your Higher Soul Self, aka your true BFF. When we practice befriending ourselves, we honor our Soul. While that might sound simple, meditation is simply an invitation to become our own best friend forever.
Invite yourself to spend quality time with yourself. Do it your way.
Consider your 2022 meditation mantra being something like this: My self-care is my Soul-care. Every day in some way I invite myself to know, accept and love myself better.
Is this calling out to your soul? Want to learn more? Join KC, who will be co-teaching the upcoming Monday/Wednesday evening Yoga Teacher Training Program starting January 26th, 2022.