—Beginning Meditation - How Others Began, Part Two—
>>> Part One: Beginning Meditation, Starting Out - Read Testimonials on How

Starting Meditation - Following the Breath, In and Out
"I was first introduced to meditation when I took some Hatha Yoga classes in 1989. It was basic learning about following the breath in and out, lying on my back relaxing at the end of class. I was also introduced to the concept that aspects of self-care can become ironic: rushing to get to yoga class to relax after work and getting stressed out in the process."
—John Nordell

From a meditation interview with John Nordell
>>> Go to the Page with this Quote.
>>> Go to Part One of this Interview.

Starting Meditation - It Felt like Something I Needed
"I had been interested in Buddhism for a long time, but basically got into it because my partner (who had been diagnosed with a terminal illness) got involved, wanting to know more about death and dying. Zen is all about meditation, and so that's what the first workshop was about. The question was asked at that first workshop, so are there books we should read about this? The workshop leader said there are lots of books, but the most important thing is to practice. Sit every day for a month and then talk to a teacher. I was impressed by that answer, and in fact did just that. Sat every morning for 10 minutes, whether I felt like it or not. After a month I could tell that something was different. Didn't know what it was, but it felt like something I needed. "
—Genko Rainwater

From a Meditation Interview with Genko Rainwater
>>> Go to the Page with this Quote.
>>> Go to Part One of this Interview.

Starting Meditation - This Calling would not Leave me Alone
"It was almost 20 years ago, so the details are a little fuzzy, but as I recall, this calling would not leave me alone. I wasn't terribly interested in consciousness or metaphysics at that time, nor healing nor shamanism. In fact, I was working at becoming an author in the science fiction genre. The whole idea of healing just began popping up in my life."
—Michelle Wood

From a Meditation Interview with Michelle Wood
>>> Go to the Page with this Quote.
>>> Go to Part One of this Interview.

Starting Meditation - To Bring More Peace and Balance
"In the beginning, what attracted me to meditation was the sense of peacefulness that seemed to be associated with it. At the time I had quit my high-paying, highly stressful job in order to bring more peace and balance into my life, qualities that I was sorely lacking in those days. I quickly found that meditative practice was indeed peaceful, but after a time I began to notice that a sense of awareness was steadily growing along with that peacefulness. The awareness grew to the point where I instinctively sought out a Buddhist teacher, and upon finding that teacher my Buddhist career began"
—Shih Ying-Fa

From an Interview with Shih Ying-Fa
>>> Go to the Page with this Quote.
>>> Go to Part One of this Interview.

>>> Part Three: How to Start Meditating - How Others Began to Meditate

Meditation Interviews
The interviews conducted for this site are done by email. Interviews with both practitioners and teachers have the benefit of offering personal insights meditation practice. Unlike dictionary-style descriptions of meditation, these testimonials reveal details that can only come from the direct experience shared by those who meditate. If you meditate, please consider sharing your story by participating in a meditation interview.
,,,tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5528291264966818565.post-8802535065828541580,,,2010-11-27T11:31:00.000-08:00,,Beginning Meditation - Why? Reasons People Meditate,0,2010-11-27T16:16:37.095-08:00 67,1,,,—Beginning Meditation - How Others Began, Part One—

We begin to meditate when we find ourselves consciously involved in the process of self-development. In short, meditation is a practice that brings us into contact with a very real wisdom. It is a wisdom that naturally emerges as we encounter deeper levels of experience. This occurs when we slow things down and become contemplative, still and silent. In stillness we investigate our feelings and thoughts more fully. We encounter life itself and witness it for what it is.

The truth of nature is always there to be seen if we can manage to be patient and observe. Principles reveal themselves to the seeker in stillness, in silence, in simply being. We develop a greater respect for love, compassion, wholeness, etc. We begin to recover our sense of inherent wellness, innocence, wonder, beauty, bliss, clarity, peace, and joy.

Anyone can sit down and be still for a few minutes. Any amount of time helps, certainly. However, meditation can only give to you what you give to it. The saying infinite patience produces immediate results is apt here. Patience IS required. There is a level of commitment needed to some form or practice.

For those just starting out, I propose just sitting for a half an hour a day for several weeks- just sitting, doing nothing other than sitting. When you need more guidance, start reading about it. Perhaps return to this site and read a few of the meditation interviews (testimonials) to compare notes. I've gathered quotes below from meditation interviews on the subject of getting started. These are in essence answers to the question How did you get started meditating?

Starting Meditation - More Mindful, Peaceful, and Patient
"I did not really meditate before kids. Maybe I was not as stressed! I began to meditate more after my kids were born, as I could feel the pressure and stress of parenthood building within. After my second child was born, I began seeking meaning and was searching for something that formalized religion was not giving me. I began to meditate and was introduced to Reiki (and actually became a Reiki master). This filled a significant hole within my spirit. And now I am committing to sitting even for only 5 minutes (but trying for at least 20- 30 minutes a day). It really makes a difference. Now, I find that I am more mindful, peaceful and patient. "
—Caroline Manrique

From a Meditation Interview with Caroline Manrique
>>> Go to the Page with this Quote.
>>> Go to Part One of this Interview.

Starting Meditation - Fell in Love with the Practice
"I was first introduced to meditation when I was 14 and started practicing yoga (I am 36 now). In my early 20's, I fell in love with the practice of following my breath with my attention. At the same time, I also started working with a shaman. For years, I would give my attention to both formal Vipassana meditation and to shamanic journeys."
—Oldriska Balouskova

From a Meditation Interview with Oldriska Balouskova
>>> Go to the Page with this Quote.
>>> Go to Part One of this Interview.

Starting Meditation - To Find a Satisfying Spiritual Life
"A couple of things colluded to set a stage that made the actual beginning meditation very easy: The destruction of my marriage intensified my desire to find a way of looking at and relating to the world that made sense to me. My chronic inability to find a satisfying spiritual life within Christianity coupled with a distaste for the church politics and the like made me ripe to look elsewhere."
—Will Collum

From a Meditation Interview with Will Collum
>>> Go to the Page with this Quote.

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