I don't expect my meditation notes to be of interest to anyone, but I like to keep track on my blog because my desire to stop binge eating is the thing that led me to try meditation in earnest.
At one month in, I've had some interesting, positive experiences and personal observations. I've also had really rough patches. Often I don't want to meditate, even though I have already witnessed how beneficial it can be. This underscores a general tendency of mine: I tend to undervalue experiential learning and overvalue reading and abstract thinking, and the way I spend my time reflects that. Also, I have a tendency to get too far ahead of myself and that tripped me up at the very end of February and beginning of March. I read too much, grappled with aspects of Buddhist philosophy that I don't need to worry about at this stage, and temporarily lost sight of the fact that I set out to stop binging, not to become a Buddhist. I absolutely, 100% knew this would happen because religion is such a loaded thing for me. I got so freaked out and frustrated that I came close to chucking the whole practice. Luckily, I had anticipated this possible reaction when signing up for the meditation course I'm currently taking, and had decided in advance that I would think critically, as ever, and discard anything I disagreed with--that it needn't be all or nothing.
Meditation is hard work. Engaging with ancient philosophies and practices in a thoughtful way is hard work, especially when those philosophies and practices are foreign to you. But I think this is really important work for me to do.
February 2012 Practices
Feb 3rd: evening breathing meditation session. Purged 14 unnecessary items from house.
Feb 4th: no meditation.
Feb 5th: did my readings, but no practice. Today's events and my reaction to them drove home the fact that I DO need to strengthen my brain with meditation, and for more reasons than just my impulsive eating.
Feb 6th: I understand the importance of developing my practice, yet feel resistance to sitting down and observing my breathing for 20 or more minutes!
Feb 7th: evening breathing meditation
Feb 8th: readings
Feb 9th: morning breathing meditation; readings
Feb 10th: short morning breathing meditation
Feb 11th: metta (lovingkindness) meditation; readings
Feb 12th: short metta
Feb 13th: morning metta; readings
Feb 14th: morning breathing; readings
Feb 15th: readings; evening metta
Feb 16th: readings; evening metta (and watched a great documentary about the Buddha!)
Feb 17th: readings
Feb 18th: morning breathing; readings
Feb 19th: evening metta
Feb 20th: readings
Feb 21st: readings; morning metta; evening metta, evening breathing
Feb 22nd: readings; evening breathing (I think!)
Feb 23rd: nothing
Feb 24th: readings. Seems I've hit a rough patch with the actual meditation. Frustration and boredom is common and I've got to work through that.
Feb 25th: readings
Feb 26th: actual proper seated metta meditation in the morning! I was so pleased! Plus daily readings.
Feb 27th: readings
Feb 28th: readings and evening breathing
Feb 29th: half a morning metta (was interrupted); afternoon body awareness (just something I sort of made up on the spot; I'm sure there is a formal practice I can get into later); purged 15 unnecessary items from the house.