Finding My Zen
Meditation and me haven’t quite seen eye-to-eye for some years. I have read the books and know its great way to calm my frantic mind and essential to living life more aligned with my spiritual self. I also know that it is far easier said than done!
I have tried to sit so, so many times but my monkey mind always gets in the way, finding every excuse to stray. Then I interviewed Sydney-based Gary Garrow Vedic meditation expert for Asia Spa magazine and his words struck a chord: ‘its your mind that shapes your life’, so I am on a mission….
Transcendental Meditation (TM)
I have since researched this mantra-based Vedic or Transcendental Meditation (TM) and feel it just might be for me. This Vedic system originated in India over 5,000 years ago and gained popularity in the 1960s when Maharishi Mahesh Yogi introduced TM to the decidedly hip following in the West that included The Beatles and Mick Jagger. Fast forward 50 years and it’s fast finding a new lease of life (as is Ayurveda’s age-old wisdom) as, rather than having to sit and just meditate, TM cleverly uses a mantra to distract the mind from its usual busy-ness and leading it inwards without us realising it.
The overriding principle of what Garrow teaches is to give people the tools to transcend their minds, to be in touch with their innate beings and live from that place. “When we connect deeply with our dharma (or deeper purpose), our life is frictionless and more beautiful. It is completely effortless, natural and automatic to dive into a deep meditative state,” he assures me. Sounds so easy, but for the majority of us who so desperately need it, so desperately hard. I am assured that this technique is effortless and takes just 20 minutes, twice a day, every day. It can be practiced anywhere while sitting comfortably with the eyes closed.
“There are 1,440 minutes in a day so 20 minutes is nothing,” Garrow adds. “If you haven’t time, then you have not learnt the value of time. Look at the productivity of the average human being who wastes much of their day in brain fog and habitual patterns! When they transcend that – more can be achieved by doing less. The real problem is that people have become so mentally consumed and depleted that they can’t enjoy family and the relationships they worked so hard to create. Some of my clients are billionaires but money hasn’t brought hem peace. Meditation takes people beyond success and worries. During the process the mind settles in a very natural and spontaneous way and this deep dive rejuvenates the entire system with myriad benefits.”
Garrow is adamant that much of our problem today is the result of our critical inner adult voice that limits what is possible. “So much of this narrative is the voice of our parents. My parents encouraged me by holding me in an amazing space and that voice supports me still. But so many children are spoiled by the stresses they are living through, as parents fail to be truly present in their lives. These kids are so pure, so unconditioned and I made a promise to foster this purity by giving my kids a strong sense of self and encouraging a wildness and spirituality in them, just as my guru taught me.”
Garrow’s wisdom is gaining ground in the corporate world too with programmes in conjunction with Google Australia for example, showing profound increases in creativity and productivity.
Vedic Meditation on line?
With results like these, maybe his techniques could spread digitally via online courses? “Traditions exist for a reason,” he clarifies, “and teaching can only be given in the presence of a teacher. Ayurveda teaches us to think beyond our own neediness and each teacher has the responsibility to uphold the purity of the teaching, so future generations can enjoy the fruits – in the very same way they did 5,000 years ago. And this wonderful reconnection can happen at any age too – at 16 or 70 - the choice is yours and the pace of change will depend on how ready you are to grow and change.”
TM is on the rise - mark my words! If my monkey mind can sit with the rest of my body in one place for 20 minutes - anyone’s can