When Meditation Becomes Difficult

If you’re like me, there are moments where meditation becomes a challenge.  It may seem almost impossible to just sit and practice it.  The mind is either too restless, or the ego is too bored with it.  Maybe there are stress levels going on, or depression.  As I’ve been fighting depression since childhood, I’ve noticed the spiritual struggle when depression is at it’s peak.

There is hope though.

Spotting the Problem

With me, I found that there are specific triggers that would make meditation very challenging.  In my life these items where:

  • Obsession with the world (Money, Work, News, etc.)
  • Media Over-Stimulation (too much TV/Movies, Music, Games)
  • Depression

If you take an inventory of your life and review what leads up to the spiritual difficulties you may discover your own list.

Regarding the above list, I found that when I was working the stock market I ended up putting 90% of my life on hold for it.  It was something that took my entire focus.  Similarly there were skills that I worked on for my job that were also consumed my life.  Any form of physical fixation will turn someone temporarily “off” from the spiritual focus – the caveat to that is if one can spiritualize the work.  In my case I wasn’t.

Another important factor is what I was allowing in my mind… the Media aspects that I was bringing in, like TV – Movies – Games… these can bring up lots of emotions… like fear, anger, frustration.  These too lower the consciousness into the physical realm.

Depression is a struggle for me.  I go through ebbs and flows with it.  In the tough times, depression can really make easy things, very difficult challenges.  As an example… when I start to get depressed, reading a book becomes impossible.  My motivation just evaporates.

Resetting

If you find that just counting your breathing or meditating on your breath is too challenging… if sitting in a room and performing your Yoga, or other spiritual practice feels impossible… Try the following:

I have found (especially in regards to depression) that sometimes it’s too challenging to do the most basic spiritual work (even reading a book.)  But there is one thing we can all do – sit and look at something.

For myself, I found that turning on a spiritual channel, like GaiamTV and watching some spiritually based content really helps.  Positive media, talks about life continuation, meditation and spiritual practice inspires me.

Inspiration is the key to resetting our slump.   As I get inspired, the motivation to meditate or be aware of the present moment, greatly increases.

Positive media is very hard to come by.  I know of GaiamTV, and there may be similar channels out there as well.  Wherever you find it, try and spend time with that.

If you have the energy to read a book, read a book on something that may be a different approach to the spiritual path.  For example, if you had a hard time meditating on emptiness, then perhaps trying a ritual based spiritual work might help break the slump.  That advice was given to me by a Jungian therapist.  The point is to try and approach the spiritual path from a different angle, as you (or me) might be evolving or shifting in our needs.  This may require us to re-evaluate how we relate to the spiritual.

As always, if you get in a spot where you need to talk to someone, feel free to reach out to me:

revbrian@bookofvirtue.com

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