Meditation. We usually connect this word with monasteries, or religious hermits, or some Eastern religions. For Americans, meditation isn’t something we connect with ordinary, every-day life.
Google defines meditation as “a written or spoken discourse expressing considered thoughts on a subject.”
Oh, we’re really good at written or spoken discourse—consider social media and current politics. Like a stone thrown into a pond, our written or spoken discourse makes waves that continue going out and out and out until the lap on the shore.
The part we often don’t do as well is considered thinking on a subject. It’s not civil debate, persuasion, accusation, or name-calling. Meditation requires depth of thought, homework, awareness of cause and effect, and acknowledging the depth of feeling of those who agree and disagree. It takes introspection, empathy, and time.
Although practiced alone, meditation is not a lonely pursuit. Through books and media we enter the thoughts of deep thinkers. Through scripture, prayer, and the Holy Spirit, we read God’s word and hear his voice.
My mind, my soul, my person, my body—this one-room schoolhouse called myself—needs meditation, a focused time deep in thinking. It doesn’t have to be done is a dark room, sitting cross-legged, for hours at a time. It can be as you walk in the rain, take a shower, vacuum, walk or jog, doodle or paint, shovel snow, chop wood, or mow the lawn…
My favorite answer to “What are you doing?” is “I was just thinking.”
For more on meditation, read Graham Cooke’s blog: