is the practice of quieting the mind into a state of rest and
relaxation, leading to an awareness of inner silence and ultimately
oneness. This mindful practice has been around for thousands of
years. It is thought to have been originated by early humans after
the domestication of fire, when endless hours were spent staring
without distraction, at the trance inducing flames. Records have
shown that the discipline was practiced in China and India in
500 BC, a key factor in the formation of Hinduism and Buddhism.
Approximately 200AD, Indian sage and author, Patanjali, wrote
of meditation in his Yoga Sutra. It is considered the heart of
yoga, as it is a general refocusing of soulful attention, which
is to be carried all the way to ultimate bliss and enlightenment
(see about yoga).
There are several methods of meditation practice. Most typically
involve concentration or visualization on a mantra, a prayer or
an object. It may also be the observation of a posture or the
breath. Attention to these allows the overactive mind to temporarily
push aside thoughts without judgment; thereby promoting clarity
of the mind and expanded awareness. Regular meditation has been
known to recharge the batteries by replenishing energy and increasing
physical stamina and spiritual strength. It reduces stress by
lowering heart rate, respiratory rate and blood pressure. It also
reduces symptoms of PMS and chronic pain, and has been used to
effectively treat psychological conditions. The practice may be
a tool used to support creative internal and external explorations.
Many teachers believe meditation should be practiced 20 minutes,
once or twice daily, in a clean sacred or peaceful place in order
to maximize its benefits. However, it is also valuable to incorporate
meditation into your daily routine by taking walks or performing
duties more mindfully; observing yourself without being attached
to random thoughts or ideas - staying in the moment!
all activities described on this page are offered this month.
Please view our calendar
page for current activities.
Manifest your dreams with Marma: a 2,500 year old meditation derived from the ancient Ayurvedic healing system. Facilitated by Max Goldberg with all proceeds benefiting the Nantucket AIDS Network. To register call 781-956-9916 and visit www.coachingfornow.com for more details.
Join Richard for shambala meditation, the practice of mindful-awareness
which cultivates openness toward ourselves and our environment,
moment to moment. Meditation cushions are provided, open to
About the Nantucket Shambhala Practice & Study Group
Shambhala Training is the path of study and practice of Shambhala
warriorship ~ the tradition of human bravery, not being afraid
of who you are. The path shows how to take the challenges of
daily life in our modern society as opportunities for contemplative
A basic truth of the Shambhala teachings is that we all want
to live sane, dignified, and confident lives, and that this
is possible. If we look directly at our own experience, we can
discover a continuity of wakefulness underlying all the changing
conditions. This wholesome, wakeful presence enables us to experience
our lives fully and directly. In Shambhala Training, this is
referred to as “basic goodness.”
The practice of mindfulness-awareness meditation taught in Shambhala
Training programs enables us to look precisely at our state
of mind without trying to alter it. This practice cultivates
openness toward ourselves and our environment, moment to moment.
When we practice openness our lives can be a journey of wakeful
and genuine existence. The Shambhala teachings recognize that
the truth of innate human wisdom and basic goodness does not
belong to any one religion or doctrine. We can appreciate all
genuinecontemplative paths, whether they stem from the great
religions, the arts or from native spirituality. The Shambhala
teachings recognize, however, that this wisdom arises only when
the grasping and confusion of ego is stilled through continuous
commitment to a contemplative discipline.