I. Serious Beginners
More and more people are interested in starting and maintaining a daily practice, but few know how to begin. I call these individuals serious beginners: those who are earnest about really getting started but who may need a guide or a teacher to offer instructions.
With serious beginners, I discuss
- having the right motivation for practice
- setting up a suitable environment for meditation
- maintaining correct posture while sitting
- learning how to breathe
- making lifestyle changes for the sake of meditation as well as ethical practice
- identifying and moving past the common problems anyone starting out or seeking to continue is bound to run into
The basic hindrances to practice and within practice–or what, in Sanskrit, are called samskaras–often require deep exploration. We do so with care and persistence.
II. Seasoned Meditators
Seasoned meditators and I may look more specifically at where they feel stuck. I often use what I call dialogical meditation to do just this.
Dialogical meditation is a one-on-one, improvisational, guided form of meditation that uses pointers, evocations, and questions to deepen our inquiry (i) into what you’re holding onto and (ii) into the nature of reality.
Listening to how you articulate your experience in the midst of our shared meditation, I let my intuition guide us toward what, here and now, needs to happen.
Does your white-knuckled grip need to be loosened? Does something blocked or stuck need to be unblocked or unstuck? Does craving need to fade? Does a greater sense of reality need to be glimpsed? Does genuine peace need to be rested into?
Each dialogical meditation–unique, direct, experiential–appears, unfolds according to what’s happening right here, and disappears yet not before opening up something beautiful and mysterious within us. Thus does it leave welcome traces in our hearts.
Who Could Benefit
Dialogical meditation can be helpful for
- those who have a seated meditation practice yet find that it’s “stale” or “lacking juice”;
- those who have experienced ongoing forms of suffering that haven’t dissolved through cognitive methods alone;
- those accustomed to breathwork who are looking for dialogue and a sense of direction;
- those who love the art of conversation but who need to tap into the intuitive, holistic parts of their being;
- those who, often for years, have been searching for meaning in life but who have yet to realize directly what meaning is;
- those concerned with “spiritual bypass” and who therefore want to investigate emotive, somatic, and instinctive aspects of their experience more closely and rigorously.
Dialogical meditations, lasting about 1 hour 20 minutes, typically unfold in 3 parts:
- We begin with a brief–perhaps 10-15 minute–dialogue with a view to getting a vivid, tangible sense of where you’re at right now.
- We engage in a dialogical meditation for roughly 40-50 minutes.
- We conclude with your articulation of what is now experientially clear to you after the meditation.
Getting In Touch
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