“When you just sit in silence the wind blows through you, the sun shines in you, and you realize you are not your body; you are everything.” – Anita Krizzan on Meditation
Meditation is an amazing and invaluable ingredient to living a reflective and balanced life; it allows you to be present grateful, helps you to act with kindness and selflessness and enhanced your connection to both the self and the enormity of the earth beneath your feet. Even with the knowledge of all of this possibility, we still manage not to make space for it. This is often not for lack of trying, rather, more often than not, it is down to a lack of time and a lack of convenient environments.
Most of us spend most of our days busy and on the move out in the world. If we do not manage to get up a little earlier for a moment of meditation, then we consider our opportunity gone. However, there are many places out in the world that are surprisingly excellent locations for a spot of mindfulness and meditation. Try some of these out next time you feel the urge to take a moment for yourself whilst you are roaming out in the world.
I am not a religious person, but I am a sucker for a Church, Abbey, Chapel, Cathedral, or even Temple (if I can find one). These places are almost always open to the public, and are not only quiet but insist an atmosphere of calm and reverence. There is something truly humbling about being in a space that is so vast and often opulent yet so very quiet and unassuming in atmosphere. They are also, especially when in a city or built up area, a haven of space. I have often sat in a church and closed my eyes; noticing the far away commotion of the outside world in comparison to the serenity and security of the foreground in which I sat.
2. Your Car
Is the office proving a little stressful today? Is the bustle of the city getting to your head? Then fear not. If you drove here, there is a pocket of silence and comfort parked just round the corner… your car. It is quite, comfortable and familiar; a slice of home on wheels. Shut the door, take off your shoes, recline your seat, maybe even pull a blanket over you for extra comfort and warmth, and be silent.
3. Public Transport
The perceived issue with meditating on public transport is that it is a little crowded and certainly quite noisy. However, noise (unless particularly biting on the ear) can be easily filtered out by the brain… it is all a case of shifting your focus. However, some things that might help your commuting meditation are sunglasses and headphones… this helps to make the external elements of volume and harsh light a little less, well, harsh. Find a comfortable seat, close your eyes and start your meditation by focusing on the breath… you’ll be amazed how easy public transport meditation can be!
4. Green Space
Green spaces can be found almost anywhere. Even the most built up cities have parks and greens scattered within them, and if you live in the countryside, well, no doubt you’ll be able to find a tree or patch of grass somewhere. If the weather is great, there is no better place to meditate on the move than a little patch of grass or a bench. Indeed, benches and tree trunks offer ideal back support as an added bonus to this most pleasant meditation location.
5. A Building Full of Books
Not all shops make good meditation spots, but there is one kind of shop that is guaranteed to be comfortable, warm and quiet… a book shop. Not only do most book shops have a pleasant ambience to them, but they are often scattered with convenient reading areas… an excellent place to settle down and have a moment to yourself. Indeed, even if you do not engage in meditative activity, wondering round a bookshop, I find, is often a welcome respite from the chaos of the street outside. Speaking of building full of books; libraries are also great, if you happen to stumble upon one.
6. A Bridge
Bridges are surprisingly common in cities, towns and villages alike. There is something majestic about a view from a bridge… often it is a view of an open space, a piece of landscape that offers relief from the close quarters of streets and offices. A perfect place to take a moment to get lost in a horizon and offer your brain the opportunity to wander, rest and return to the present moment.
By Chris Thomson
Once you have located a space for meditation on the move, you may need some practices and triggers to get you into a meditative state. We can help with that too: Meditation on Foot: 7 Great Practices for Professionals on The Move
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