a simplified categorisation, there are three degrees of meditation:
the mind becomes quiet, then calm, then silent. These apparent synonyms
refer to different levels of stillness.
In our busy days, we all need moments of silence. Both external and internal. Some would disagree, or most would disagree, as we are conditioned to fill silence immediately. If we don’t immediately fill the external silence, with music or chatter, then we fill the internal silence, with thoughts, plans or memories.
Agitation and noise bring an illusion of liveliness, the more animated and loud we are the more alive we feel. Inactivity, calm and quiet are usually viewed as passivity, indifference, dullness, deadness. But this apparent dead-time, when we disconnect from all outward stimuli, is imperative if we are to reach beyond the surface of things.
For most people, the only time that vaguely resembles this complete silence is just before they go to sleep, collapsing in bed after an exhausting day. It’s all too easy to take the path of least resistance and allow our busy lives to completely take over. While we are paying undue attention to the everyday Me – or the Conditioned Me – to the business-minded Me, to the parent Me, the good citizen Me, and struggling to meet all the demands imposed on all those various Mes, not a single moment in a day is scheduled for the Me-Me – for our Intended Me.
Even when we believe we’re doing something for the Me-Me, saying: Now, this is just for Me, truly for Me, this is what I really want and enjoy – and you curl up cosily with a book, or go fishing, or skydiving – it’s nevertheless just a satisfaction for one or another of those numerous other Mes – such as the playful Me, the carefree Me, the young-at-heart Me – and, again, nothing for the Me-Me.
Anan-Do meditation is a reminder to us to allow a few moments for the