HealthCorps & Sahaja Meditation
Alan Wherry of Sahaja Meditation is one of HealthCorps’ partners. Alan Wherry has helped to train HealthCorps’ coordinators in the Sahaja Meditation technique. We recently asked him, what is meditation?
“Despite its increasing popularity, very few individuals actually know what meditation is. Some regard it as the mental focus on something, or perhaps a special way of breathing. Others consider that we meditate when we imagine something that gives us peace or satisfaction. All these methods have one goal – to slow down the incessant activity of our minds. But such exercises aren’t really meditation. Meditation is a state of awareness; it can be described as “thoughtless awareness”. It’s not about doing something – it is an actual state of awareness. And we are either in this state or we are not, regardless of what we are doing. A woman can be in meditation while doing her day’s work while another can be far from meditation while sitting in the lotus position chanting mantras on the top of a mountain.
When we look at various explanations of meditation, meditation is sometimes defined as taking a moment to sit quietly or to ponder. True meditation, however is much more than this. It is a state of profound, deep peace that occurs when the mind is calm and silent, yet completely alert. This is just the beginning of an inner transformation that takes us to a higher level of awareness that enables us to see the world in a different way, to see the world more from the viewpoint of our spirit, which is always loving and compassionate, as opposed to through our ego and conditionings. The problem most of us face is, how do we achieve this state? And how do the coordinators at HealthCorps make it relevant to teens?”
Recently at at West Side High School in Manhattan, Nicole Riley, the Dean, Arielle Feldshon, HealthCorps coordinator and Alan Wherry had a brainstorming session. Their discussion focused on ways to make Sahaja meditation more integrated into the culture of the school. The majority of teachers support meditation, and it was decided that one of the objectives will be to have teachers lead a short (even a two minute) meditation at the beginning of a class, or sports training session. Presenting the idea of meditation differently for the students who don’t see it as something within their cultural framework can also be valuable. Talking about the benefits of meditation to teens can be as simple as replacing the word “meditation” with the concepts of de-stressing or learning to focus better.
For more information,visit http://www.sahajameditation.com or Alan’s blog http://ydigmcoolfire.tumblr.com/