The truth is you can meditate anywhere. And anywhere, in any place you can be in meditation.
It’s not so much a specialized activity like swimming or ice hockey or motorcar touring, for which you need specialized equipment like a wooden stick with a curved and taped end or an Olympic-sized pool full of chlorinated water or a long open road with clear sight lines and four-on-the-floor. Meditation is more like a state which you are in – not “a state of mind” so much as a state of being.
And more than something that you are in, such as a room, meditation is something that you are. It is the natural state in which you belong. It is how you were before you got distracted by the world. With meditation, you are connected.
So you can meditate on a bus, while walking a dog, even while sweeping the porch. As Dr. Seuss might say, you can meditate “on a boat, with a goat, in the rain or on a train.”
You can even meditate in a box with a fox, if you want to. But it is probably best if that box is clean, gently decorated and with a whiff of incense and the sound of some nice music. It would help too if the fox is into meditation – or at least sits quietly.
This is all because meditation is a state of thoughtless awareness. It is a connection to the Divine and the lines are always open. We just don’t want to interfere with the quality of that connection. We do not want to dilute the signal nor be distracted by things negative – or even mundane. Meditation is nothing but surrender. And sometimes that is hard to do. But it can be done.
As much as we would all like to meditate in the smoke and fire of the battlefield, meditation needs to start at home, the place where you are in charge.
In order to meditate, you must first want to meditate. There must be a desire in your heart. Be humble about it. Ask for the necessary temperament. Create an environment conducive to meditation. For starters, make a meditation room.
In the same way that we all prefer to sleep in a bed rather than at a desk, reserve a spot in your home for meditation. This will help: clean and simple with everything in its place. A photo of Shri Mataji will carry the vibrations to you. A candle, a flower, a stick of incense – everything placed with purpose. All these things will assist you. Declare to yourself, “This is a place for me. For my meditation. For my spiritual ascent.”
With swimming suit donned, eye goggles secured and mind alert to the task ahead, you are ready to swim the length of the pool in a straight line. It is the same with meditation. Your initial actions declare your aspirations. Your aim is straight – to be in the centre. Both your attitude and your desire are a promise to your true Self.
So while you can meditate anywhere, your own space always works best. And that is your starting point. On the boat or on the train may be a bit more challenging, but now that you have Self Realization you can do it – and do it anywhere. The meditative state will be with you when need it. The world is yours and the connection is always open. It is just up to you pick up the phone.
So meditate in the rain, but remember that the rain is always falling, and you need to hold the bucket the right way up in order to collect the water.
And remember too that meditation is a collective affair. Solitary mediation can be cool, but collective meditation is supreme.
So tell the goat and the fox to get with it. Surrender to the Divine, get connected and do it together.
Then get on that boat or the train or the bus and find others like yourself. We are here waiting for you. Although we have never met, our spirits are the same.
Meditation require dedication. It is a new undertaking for which you need to be devoted. But just like the Seuss character, who thought he did not like the oddly-coloured eggs and ham, you have to try. Once he tried, he knew he not only liked the new breakfast menu, but he could eat it anywhere and at any time.
In a house, with a mouse, here or there, he could eat them anywhere. And then all he could say was thank-you.
“Thank you, Sam-I-Am.”