Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Meditation Monday: Creating a spot at home

So you've decided that incorporating a meditation practice in your family is a good idea but aren't sure what to do next?
Younger children will learn the most by watching what you model; don't worry about trying to get children younger than 6 or 7 to "sit" and meditate. Some may join in on their own, but all are absorbing some level of your activity. In his book, "The Seven Spiritual Laws of Parenthood" Deepak Chopra suggests that after the age of 7 or 8 children are more ready to practice along with you.

A serene spot can be carved out in even the smallest of living spaces. First, sit down and consider what part of your home makes you feel the most calm, relaxed and clear. Is it inside or out? Away from phones and electronics? Now look at the list of elements below and pick a few that seem inspiring to you:

*add a plant
*create a small altar (This could be as simple as a windowsill or small box)
*Where will you sit? In a chair? on a cushion?

Since I switch between eyes open and eyes closed during my own practice, I prefer to sit on a throw pillow in front of a window or sliding glass door. Instant zen. Of course, practicing at home may be difficult with the din of daily life (and kids!) around, so perhaps walking to a nearby park or grove will provide the "innerspace" for a few minutes of quiet reflection. If leaving the house proves impossible, try to communicate the importance of this quiet time to the rest of the family. Start by hanging a small signal (such as a bright ribbon) near wear you sit to remind kids of what you are doing and keeping the time short (5 minutes to start) so they can adjust. You may even be surprised to see that they begin to sit near you and emulate your practice after a while. Meditation can seem daunting if you bite off big chunks- "How can I sit still for 20 minutes doing NOTHING when there is so much I need to do?" but if you start with five minutes on a throw pillow every time you think of it, the practice will grow on its own!

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1 comment:

  1. We are going to focus on meditating this week, being back in nature and being in the present moment. Its earth week and no tv week too!


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