January the first month of a new year, a fresh start to begin again. We may look back to the last few months and realize one day jumped into the next day. One season
seemed to have faded into the next season. Each holiday seemed to overlap and become
one in the same. Perhaps it all has become a blur. We are told that the holidays are the
most wonderful time of the year. Recall the time spent with family and friends. How did
you connect with them? How did you connect with yourself? How does it all make you
feel? Now may be the time to pause, reflect, recreate and live in gratitude.
Meditation is a practice of stillness. Many find that being still is the hardest part.
Many say that they are unable to meditate because they are unable to clear their minds.
A misconception of clearing the mind is thinking the mind needs to be blank with no
thoughts. Actually, our minds are always active and always creating thoughts. Even the
monks that dedicate their lives to meditation have thoughts. The practice of meditation
is to manage the thoughts by allowing thoughts to flow. It is only when we attach a
story to each thought that we fall out of meditation. Rather, it is a practice of allowing
the thought to surface and then allowing them to go. There is no control or resisting of
thoughts, merely creating a flow. Imagine watching an old 8mm film strip movie. One
frame at a time, each frame separate and apart from the other. It is only when the scenes
are linked together that it tells a story. The same is true with the thoughts of our mind.
When we allow a thought to come and imagine it flowing away on a cloud, that is
In organized religion, prayer is a form of meditation. Many rituals are repetitive, as
praying the rosary. The repeating of prayers bring our minds into an altered state of
calmness. Prayer is talking to God, a Higher Power or whatever we choose to believe to
be. Meditation is listening for an answer to a prayer. Sitting in stillness allows our
thoughts to provide an answer. The practice of meditation is a guidance of seeing,
hearing, feeling the essence of all potential. It serves as an opportunity for growth,
deepening and expansion of our thoughts and awareness.
Metta Meditation origins are in Hinduism and Buddhism traditions. It is an excellent
form for those new to meditation, as well as those who have a meditation practice.
Sitting as a group provides collective energy which is a powerful benefit to each other
and beyond the meditation circle. Metta means the slightest of energy magnified to be
set free. Metta meditation is a guided meditation which gracefully flows one thought to
the next creating a sense of a higher self for a higher purpose. It is a practice of
Lovingkindness, a means to connect with ourselves and to each other. It begins with
connecting to our breathe, a means of centering and grounding our body and mind. This
leads to the fundamental path in opening our heart. In this space, we begin to trust the
safety of self love. Our thoughts become observations of merely what is, a non
judgmental existence. In this security, the cultivation of good allows a revision of the
limited views we hold of our own potential. A spiritual practice creates a view to align
with an expansive vision and sustain our real moment to moment experience of that
vision. In this we find peace. So let us end with a Metta Meditation Mantra: May we be
safe. May we be happy. May we be free of suffering. May we live in Lovingkindness.
Roseann Petropoulos has been practicing meditation for most of her life. She is a
certified Hypnotherapist, Wellness Coach and Reiki Master. Private sessions are
available to release and break the cycle of old habits. Roseann believes that our