Meditation Practice

My Meditation Practice

I first heard about meditation while in the ’60s when Maharishi Mahesh Yogi came to UCSB to give a talk. It was interesting, but not something I was particularly interested in pursuing at the time. Then in 1979 while browsing in a bookstore in Coos Bay, OR I pulled a little book from the shelf which caught my eye. It was called “The Mantram Handbook” by Eknath Easwaran. I have no idea what drew me to this book, but I read it and was very impressed with the ideas he presented. I discovered that he had a community known as The Blue Mountain Center of Meditation located in Petaluma, CA. I went to visit and listen to him speak and immediately felt drawn to follow his spiritual teachings. I visited as often as I could, attended some workshops and read all his books. I soon began a small meditation group that met regularly in my home in North Bend, OR. I learned that it was important to have a support community to help maintain the practice of meditation. While Eknath Easwaren was from India, he appreciated and supported all faiths. My own leanings were toward Buddhism. Sadly, in 1999, Easwaren died, but his Center and teachings continue in Petaluma and beyond.

I have continued to practice daily meditation ever since. Since the advent of the Smartphone, I have used an app known as Insight Timer to time, track and connect with other meditators. I have found it very useful and is one of my most used apps today. During the last few years they have updated the app to include thousands of on-line guided meditations and talks. I still meditate with some of the same friends I met back in 2008 on-line. It’s not as good as being in the same room, but does provide a sense of community. I highly recommend it.

And I highly recommend the practice of meditation!