If you haven’t noticed we yogadorks are huge fans of the Namaste Book Club! And so we are super thrilled to be a part of their great meditation challenge, ‘Meditate on This’, a month-long journey through daily meditation practice. Without too much YD yapping, we’ll just let Namaste Book Club founders, the fabulous Nancy Alder and Jenny Naes, tell you all about the experience, reflections, oh, and the prizes!
‘Meditate On This’:Reflections
by Nancy Alder and Jenny Naes
On September 10, 2009 Namaste Book Club officially launched our latest reader challenge: ‘Meditate on This’. In the month-long challenge, we asked our members to meditate every day from September 10 through October 10 and encouraged them to share their experiences on Twitter using hashtag #nbcmm. The challenge so far has been a wonderful success, with participants ranging from brand spanking new to meditation all the way to those with established daily meditation routines. While every participant truly wins this challenge by discovering peace and tranquility built from the inside out, Namaste Book Club is also randomly selecting two winners to receive one of two prizes: a YogaDork “Bailout” tee (donated graciously by member @gomelissago) OR a paperback copy of The Blooming of a Lotus: A Rev. Ed. Of the Classic Guided Meditation for Achieving the Miracle of Mindfulness by Thich Nhat Hanh (donated by Namaste Book Club).
As October 10th is just around the corner, our month of meditation challenge is drawing to a close. We’ve been thrilled by the response from #nbcmm participants and the tales shared of going inward in different places and in different ways. We have seen how this month has helped so many members stay focused on a daily meditation practice, and remark on how doing it with the group has further deepened their experience.
We’d like to hear from you!
Were you too shy to share via Twitter? Did you meditate every day and forget to tweet with the #nbcmm hashtag? Do you want to sing from the roof tops, in a quiet pensive way, about how it has affected your approach to meditation? Well here’s everybody’s chance!
In honor of the last ten days of ‘Meditate on This’, we have teamed up with YogaDork, upped the ante and are offering now a THIRD prize. With a nod to the profound affect the month of meditation has had upon us as leaders of the club, how it has been wonderful to share it with everyone, and with a big thank you to a suggestion from fellow yogadork @tweetsuzi, we picked a lovely book for our fourth reading. Upon conclusion of our third club selection, Hatha Yoga Pradikipa, we will read The Wisdom of No Escape and The Path of Loving Kindness by Pema Chödrön.
Win a copy of this book by simply adding a reflection about your monthly meditation below in the comments, describing how the challenge has affected you: positive, negative, majorly, not at all, etc. Share your tale with fellow #yogadorks (you can even be anonymous if you wish). Everyone adding a comment (excluding Nancy and Jenny) will be entered into a random drawing to win.
To get you motivated and inspired to share, we asked two members @jodim and @veganyogini to offer reflections about what the ‘Meditate on This’ challenge has meant to them and how it has affected their practices. Here are just a few testimonials from club members so far:
The month of meditation has kept meditation in my mind constantly. Sometimes I wonder if I can do driving meditation. Walking meditation. lying in bed meditation? It has been such a gift to know that others are striving toward the same goal, and to feel their energy. I bought a few books and try to read something about meditation every day. Some days I have formally meditated three times. Other days, it’s just a minute. But really, my blood pressure lowered, and I have felt more grounded. This makes me want to go on a vipassana retreat to see what would happen if I could really just shut up for ten days and see what happens.
As a frequent meditator before the challenge I can say that the challenge did open my eyes to various forms of meditation, as well as helped me to break free from my attachment to the time/place I meditated. Typically I would meditate at the same time in the same place each day. During the challenge I have broken free from that, and have begun to meditate more frequently, in various places, realizing that meditation doesn’t have to be siting on my cushion in my room, and for 30 minutes.. It’s drawn attention to how meditation affects my state of mind, and has lead me to see that even brief periods of thoroughly focused attention helps me to see the world through new eyes. Seeing all of the tweets from participants kept me going and reminded me to meditate frequently. Seeing that my Twitter community was meditating as well really made me feel connected, almost as if a group meditation was occuring, even when I was alone.
I had tried to maintain a daily meditation practice before, but I never stuck with it. I would start when my mind was in the right place, and stop when the meditation got “hard” (ie: I was finally sitting down face to face with my fears.) I was greatful for the opportunity this month to finally sit down with my fears instead of running from them. In the past month I realized that I gave my fears a lot of power, but through encouragement from my fellow twitter friends, I was able to deal with things that I’d been avoiding and recognizing that the things I’m afraid of do not have control of my life, only I do. I feel like I still have a ways to go with my personal meditation, although I’m proud to say that I have meditated every day and feel that I am really getting over the first hump in making meditation a daily habit. I have also noticed that my disposition has become calmer and I feel a stronger connection to those around me. This month, meditation has given me the gift of greater loving kindness, both towards myself and towards others, and for this I am full of gratitude.
I am relatively new to a daily meditation practice mainly because I find it hard to have a few moments of quiet in my crazy life. Some days I haven’t been able to do it, honest truth, but knowing that others have and reading their tweets has given me peace. I have been able to find space that didn’t exist before we started. I have found quiet in my mind at all times of the day and in all sorts of random locations. I’ve learned that if I can do it anyone can. Finally, I know that I have a wonderful network of folks to turn to for inspiration if I need it.
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