A new, groundbreaking framework so you can use any meditation. Explore the only ways to meditate and find what’s best for your goals & personality.
For people who want a good grounding and avoid the pitfalls.
Progress quickly, while knowing why some things help and other 'popular' methods, will stall your practice.
Packed with insightful gems, so you skip the frustration. Written by someone who has made the mistakes, but kept going, and created the new framework from his experience on many 3-12 month retreats in solitary and silence.
A code inside the book gives you exclusive access to EXTRA resources via the free Meditation & Wellbeing app.
It took me a long time to concede that there are at least three (mutually exclusive) definitions of mindfulness from the Buddhist traditions. Many secular Mindfulness Teachers use the term to mean the whole gamut of mindfulness practices. Many of these practices use several mind-technologies that are definitely not their chosen definition of mindfulness. That's why I ended up with a new set of terminology: which avoids "mindfulness" but covers ALL the technologies of meditation. I had to find a way to present the various parts (the 7 mind-technologies) so people have the knowledge they need to identify what they are doing. It helps with diagnosing problems with your meditation. When you know what each part does and how to develop them, it also facilitates achieving your goals.
Just because something is meditative, doesn't make it a meditation. If it is meditative, then one or more of meditation’s mind-technologies are being used, BUT you are also doing something else. Meditation is an activity exclusively of the mind. Doing anything else, including controlling the breath, moving your body, or looking around, means you are NOT meditating. The definition of meditation is: “A purposeful activity of the mind, with seven principles and making use of the two core, or more, of the seven technologies.” The outlandish claim is, you will not find meditation outside these seven mind-technologies (which are explored within the book). Here is a list of things that are often mistaken for meditation: Walking meditation; 90%+ of mindfulness practices; Yoga postures and stretches; Tai Chi; Dance; Breathwork; Breathing techniques; Stress relief techniques; Being in nature (walking, skipping); Being “in the flow”; Chanting mantras (verbally); Reciting or singing prayers out loud; Falling into a trance. That is a list of Informal Practices. Informal Practices can be wonderful and I encourage meditators to explore them. But to conflate them with meditation is to confuse people who want to explore the amazing benefits of real meditation.
When I first learned to meditate, I was told to relax. But I thought it was an optional task - for just the beginning of the meditation. I now know it is a crucial part of the practice and is for the full meditation. However, when I relaxed, I fell asleep. I could relate to the comment from the Monk, "Sleep deprivation is a big issue in our society, so for the first few days in retreat, many people are just catching up on that instead of meditating." After meditating for a little while, I found my mind was less groggy (sleepy). I could stay with my meditation - while surrendering into a nurturing Restful Absorption. As with most meditation practice, there is an initial period of experimentation and adjustment. I was discerning the fine-line between groggy, and absorbed but more conscious. Now, my main job is to help students to stop pushing, pulling, or controlling. Instead, relax and allow the process of meditation to do it's job. The following terms are defined and discussed in the book: an object of meditation; absorption; Engrossed Attention (EA).
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