Why I meditate

zenAs I say, I’ve recently taken to meditating; every morning, sometimes in the afternoon, evening.

It’s been a month, more or less. Who knows if I’ll keep it up? I don’t even know why, initially, I started. I sure as hell wasn’t expecting it to do anything other than give me half an hour relaxation a day, half an hour ‘me time’. Half an hour sat like those slim white women (always slim, always white, always women) on the covers of books and magazines and in all the stock photography, with closed eyes and that irritatingly beautific expression beaming from the shelves and the screens and the pages of Yoga Today.

OK. I don’t sit like them. I am in some ways preternaturally flexible (hello boys), but I can’t quite comfortably manage a full lotus position – feet on thighs, pelvis square on the floor, stable, strong. I can drag my legs most of the way, and hold the pose out of sheer bloody mindedness while my  feet slide down and my ankles end up twisted at an angle that can’t be healthy (and certainly doesn’t feel it), and maybe even stay like that for a full 10 minutes while my legs go numb and my upper back starts to howl, but eventually I have to admit that I will never be a slim white woman.

Besides, I meditate zen-style. Eyes open.

Continue reading

Vallium and zen

zenI’ve started meditating. I spend approximately 1/5th of my adult life starting meditating. Hopefully one of these days it’ll stick.

I first started when I was a teenager, mum had a ‘teach yourself yoga’ book which lay about the house. I picked it up, started doing the occasional asana on the days I was off school / the days I couldn’t be bothered to go into school (by my mid teens these were many). On the occasions I bother to look, I’ve got fond memories of dipping into that tatty book, hidden inside in the autumn and winter sun, hiding from school.

Continue reading