Sitting meditation is like returning home to give full attention to and care for our self. Like the peaceful image of the Buddha on the altar, we too can radiate peace and stability. We sit upright with dignity, and return to our breathing. We bring our full attention to what is within and around us. We let our mind become spacious and our heart soft and kind. We follow our breath as it goes in and out of our nostrils. We become more relaxed with each in- and out-breath. Aware of the Sangha around us, we feel in harmony with the larger body. Everybody is breathing together, slowly, and mindfully.
Sitting meditation is very healing. We realize we can just be with whatever is within us -–our pain, anger, and irritation, or our joy, love, and peace. We are with whatever is there without being carried away by it. Let it come, let it stay, then, let it go. No need to push, to oppress, or to pretend our thoughts are not there. Observe the thoughts and images of our mind with an accepting and loving eye. We are free to be still and calm despite the storms that might arise in us.
If our legs or feet fall asleep or begin to hurt during the sitting, we are free to adjust our position quietly. We can maintain our concentration by following our breathing and slowly, and attentively as we change our posture.
If you are new to the practice, or new to the Broward Lotus Sangha, please arrive half an hour before the Sangha meeting starts, so you can receive an introductory meditation lesson and be properly introduced to our practice guidelines. More suggestions for guided meditations can be found on this website, in Thich Nhat Hanh’s book, The Blooming of a Lotus, or also from one of the Broward Lotus Sangha core members or Dharma teachers.
Please find your seat at least five minutes before the meditation period starts so that everyone is comfortably seated before the bell is invited to formally begin the session. When you hear the bell, please stop doing whatever you might be doing and take an opportunity to breath in and out, slowly and mindfully, three times.
If you are late for sitting meditation, please enter very quietly. We will be talking again before our Walking Meditation period starts.
Partial Source: Plum Village