Meditation

Meditation is like a needle after which comes a threatd of gold, composed of affections, prayers and resolutions.

After the action of the imagination, follows the action of the understanding which we call meditation, which is nothing else than one or several considerations made in order to move our affections to God and to divine things, in which meditation is different from study and other thoughts and considerations.

Zen meditation does not mean sitting and thinking. On the contrary, it means acting with as little thought as possible. The fencing master trained his pupil to guard against every attack with the same immediate, instinctive rapidity with which our eyelid closes over our eye when something threatens it. His work is aimed at breaking down the wall between thought and act, at completely fusing body and senses and mind so that they might all work together rapidly and effortlessly.

This middle path… is the noble path, namely: right views, right intent, right speech, right conduct, right means of livelihood, right endeavor, right mindfulness, right meditation… Which leads to insights, leads to wisdom, which conduces to calm, to knowledge, to perfect enlightenment, to Nirvana.

People who know they will die live very carefully. Not careful as in fearful; careful as in full of care. Every word, every act, every relationship holds the possibility of giving birth to something filled with great care. And that thing need not be showy or dramatic, for the most potent spiritual acts are often acts of breathtaking simplicity: a simple prayer, a sip of wine and a piece of bread, a single breath in meditation, a sprinkling of water on the forehead, an exchange of rings, a kind word, a hand on the cheek, a blessing.

Transcendent, mystical, and spiritual experiences have a real biological component. The neurological changes that occur during meditation disrupt the normal processes of the brain – perceptually, emotionally, and linguistically – in ways that make the experience indescribable, awe-inspiring, unifying, and indelibly real. In fact, the intensity of such experiences often gives the practitioner a sense that a different or higher level of reality exists beyond our everyday perceptions of the world.

It is of primary importance that a certain space of time be allotted daily to meditation on eternal things. No priest can omit this without serious manifestation of negligence and without a grave loss to his soul.

Meditation, because it is free of dogma, of historical commitments and narrow prejudices, because it is practiced for the most part silently and thereby secretly, and because it is practiced by some members of all religions - meditation is a channel for seekers of all faiths or no faith, a river into which many streams can freely flow.

Unlike Easterners, who are given to meditation, or Westerners, who have an inquisitive turn of mind, we of Africa, belonging neither to the East nor the West, are fundamentally observers, relying more on intuition than on the process of reasoning ... With us, life has always meant the pursuit of Happiness rather than the pursuit of Beauty or Truth.

Love is seeing God in the person next to us, and meditation is seeing God within us.

Meditation is a mirror which reveals to you your virtues and your vices.

Words are the shell, meditation the kernel. Words are the body of prayer, and meditation its spirit.

I have brought myself by long meditation to the conviction that a human being with a settled purpose must accomplish it, and that nothing can resist a will which will stake even existence upon its fulfillment.

Knowledge is indeed better than blind practice; meditation excels knowledge; surrender of the fruits of action is more esteemed than meditation. Peace immediately follows surrender... Lust, anger, and greed, these three are the soul-destroying gates of hell

Meditation is not a way to enlightenment, nor is it a method of achieving anything at all. It is peace and blessedness itself. It is the actualization of wisdom, the ultimate truth of the oneness of all things.

Wisdom is the intuitive knowledge of the mind of love and clarity that lies beneath one's ego-driven anxieties and aggressions. Meditation is going into the mind to see this for yourself - over and over again, until it becomes the mind you live in.

Reading and conversation may furnish us with many ideas of men and things, yet it is our own meditation that must form our judgment.

Mature spirituality has little to do with altered states of consciousness. Powerful meditation and visionary experiences often initiate people into spiritual life, waking them up to untapped potentials. But mental disciplines, such as meditation cannot single-handedly sustain us on our journeys. We also need to open our hearts, then embody our love in everyday acts of attentive living. This integration of wisdom, love, and embodied action, which requires years of inner and outer work, constitutes our spiritual curriculum in today's modern world.

Meditation is not a means to an end. It is both the means and the end.

Meditation is the action of silence.