My clients who’ve been meditating report that they are surprised at how well they’re handling the pandemic. I’m not. 😉 Because I know meditation, when done right, is the most powerful ally available to you. I’ve talked with many people about my upcoming meditation course (begins 4/16) and encountered some misconceptions about meditation that are often in the way. Here are the top five myths I see: #1 Meditation is about quieting the mind. This is what stopped my meditation practice for decades. I had the common idea that I was supposed to quiet my mind. I couldn’t. So, I figured I was bad at meditating and avoided it. I didn’t think I needed a teacher. Boy, was I wrong. Even a musical instrument you can eventually figure out on your own. With meditation, you can stay lost forever. Paradoxically, it’s fully experiencing that you cannot control your mind that gets you free of it. It’s not about not-having thoughts, it’s about not necessarily believing them. This is what’s called “disidentifying” from mind, and that’s the result of proper meditation. #2 I don’t have time to meditate. Benefits from meditation can happen in as little as fifteen minutes a day. Be honest. You have that. #3 It takes years of practice to benefit from meditation. Research on meditation shows benefits in as little time as a couple of months. It also depends on how you learn. If you try to stop your mind as in #1, you may never benefit from it. But if you learn how to do it right, you can expect results quickly. What kind of results? Lowered stress, increased resiliency and peace, greater sense of well-being, decreased depression and anxiety, and a lot more. #4 Meditation is difficult. It is, if you try too hard to concentrate, are overly attached to results, think you have to clear your mind, or fall prey to other common roadblocks. The better you get at it, the easier it becomes. And it’s not very difficult to begin with. #5 Meditation doesn’t fit my religion/beliefs (esp. Christianity). I notice people who’ve actually tried meditation don’t have this belief. What they have is a belief about meditation that isn’t true. Meditation is fundamentally about being with reality. One word people use for reality is “God.” So it’s not surprising there are dozens of references to meditation in the Bible. “May my meditation be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the Lord.” (Psalm 104:34) Religious people that I know say meditation improves their relationship with God. But I’d prefer you not believe me and discover for yourself what it’s about. Meditation, after all, is simply about your direct experience. Meditation For Awakening is an 11-week course beginning 4/16. If you’ve been thinking you want to try meditation, and want to learn it right the first time (unlike me), this is for you. Or if you are a meditator and are not getting the results you want, I can help accelerate your practice.