Monday, 4 July 2011

Ommmmmmmmm.....tiddly pom

People I know who know about meditation have often said to me:
"Oh you should try meditation, it helps calm the mind and you think too much about your life."
And I have thought:
'Yes, I should try meditation, I need to calm my mind, I think too much about my life.'
So I've been thinking about doing meditation for about......15 years. And finally, I googled 'mediation class' and found one: up the road, at my local Buddhist centre. Perfect. As they say, when the pupil is ready......

So it was that I turned up one sunny evening; mindful, eager and inappropriately dressed. Us newcomers were directed to a large room, smelling sweetly of incense, and instructed in low tones to sit 'comfortably' on piles of cushions, under the gaze of a large, golden Buddha. I arranged my cushions and bent my legs about me, closed my eyes, listened to the words of my teacher and began the practice.

I tried hard to 'observe the breath''s harder than it sounds.....but, I thought, this is great, I'm meditating. A minute and a half later my right foot had developed pins and needles so I shifted my weight minutely and realised my left foot was totally numb. I twisted slightly and the bracelets on my left arm jangled noisily so I tried to muffle the sound with my right hand but that alerted me to the pain in my right shoulder, which was moving into my neck. By now I had lost all feeling below the waist and could pinch my calf quite hard, to no affect. The tight denim of my skinny jeans had cut off all circulation in my legs. Completely. I couldn't move at all. I tried to 'observe' the pain and focus on my breathing but I was sort of hyperventilating and wondering if I was giving myself deep vein thrombosis.

Eventually, the gong chimed and we were back in the room. I flopped sideways off my cushions, both legs now paralysed, and tried desperately to massage life back into them, willing my toes to wiggle, while all about me were happily springing up, eager to chat about their experience over the mint and chamomile tea. Still, for 20 minutes I hadn't thought about the rest of my life.

As the Buddhists say;
Before enlightenment: chop wood, carry water
After enlightenment: chop wood carry water.......

Top tip: Always wear lose fitting clothing when meditating.....


  1. Meditation; Oh dearie, dearie me.

    Next thing you know you'll be hanging crystals from the ceiling, communing with the spirits at the bottom of the garden and burning certain herbs and essences to create a "positive spiritual environment", and if certain herbs and essences are involved, communing with your local policeman in the "positive spiritual environment" of the interrogation rooms.

    I agree with the lose fitting clothing though, I once wore my son's boxers for a day (complete accident, my beloved had put them in my drawer, and I put them on in the dark. I can assure you that the mild panic you felt when you were loosing feeling in your legs was nothing compared to mine when "certain areas" went numb.

    Are you going to try it again?

  2. I think that some people are better at meditation than others. I am not one of the better ones.
    This was hysterical.

  3. I'm a bit like that at Zumba - I just concentrate on on surviving and breathing for the next hour!! And not on the email I accidently sent to the customer today instead of my boss stating how obnoxious and abusive the customer had been!!! Well he was and he should be ashamed of himself. xxxx

  4. It's a beginning! I have never tried meditation, but I have tried other practices to still the mind. Several times I have quietly in a darkened room simply focusing on a candle--that works for me.

  5. Lovely. I did't have to got to meditation classes to switch my mind off from thinking too much about my life - you did that in a far more entertaining way, by making me smile at a little bit of yours! Thank you.

  6. hello my dear friend. I have been maditating for about 11 year. It takes some practice, like everything else.
    The thoughts still come and go. Nobody has the power to stop the mind, but once you stop engaging, they slow down and let you be.
    I do not have a set time; although I do a little bit in the morning, while peeling potatoes, in long journeys...
    I love the star dress too, yeahhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

  7. Good on you for giving it a go. I tried it once and it worked, I felt like I was stoned xx

  8. Was 'maditating' the correct term or a typo? I'm having that! reckon I've been maditating all my blinkin' life!

  9. I've been thinking of meditation for about 15 years too! I've Googled it a few times...does that count for anything?