In the words of Master Shi Yan Xiang:
'' Two separately difficult concepts to understand for today's western man. How much more the combination of both.
First of all, a beginner should be very happy with himself, if he sits for only five minutes in the lotus position or just squats a day. Without having to do anything more, according to what his Teacher told him in class.
When we meditate it does not necessarily mean that our mind should be cleansed of any thoughts and we should be pressed to chase them when they approach, as it is the first thing that happens when a beginner starts taking meditation lessons. As soon as we close our eyes, all the thoughts, all the problems attack, as if closing the eyes, a big door of our mind opens. This, which is perfectly normal, should not panic us, but we should calm down so much that we get to the point where we can focus on one of all these thoughts.
We have heard Teachers tell us too many times to focus your attention on your breath, imagine the air entering and leaving your nostrils when you inhale and exiting when you exhale. This helps us to concentrate on one thing rather than being misled by our thoughts.
Never consider yourself a failed meditator if you do not accomplish any of the above. Take time and use it with meditation and you will see that everything happens if we really believe in ourselves.
With constant meditation come the realities. Meditation is an exercise of the mind, spiritual and not physical. This calms our mind and we begin to have awareness of various things. Once we manage to keep our mind in a state of calm most hours of the day, we will begin to see more clearly what is happening around us, at any time of the day. Walking, driving, talking, working etc. In other words, we will begin to live in every moment, for example: When you walk, calm down and slow down your pace, feel the earth with your sole, see the colors around you, smell the smells from the surrounding plants, trees. Concentrate on what you are doing! And apply it to whatever you do, all day long! This is Chan!
So, at any given time, you will have a clear mind and make better decisions because your mind, at all times, is focused on what you are doing at that moment, without running elsewhere thinking about 50 different things. Meditation in motion. This is how the realizations come about! Awarenesses are personal and different for everyone. Awareness, from the experiences and wisdom of everyday life.
When we have an awareness, we stop whatever we are doing, look up slightly and smile with satisfaction. Believe me! One of the most beautiful things in human life! The moment of awareness. "
There is a misconception that when we sit in the lotus position, that is squatting, it is equivalent to Chan Meditation.
Chan's 6th Teacher, Huining once said:
'' What is a seated Chan? Chan exists beyond all natural obstacles and all values. Sitting means being focused and restless. "Chan means to be calm and think about ourselves."
Thus, sitting Chan is a mental state and not an external posture of the body. Chan's 6th Teacher, Huining, also made it clear that one should not be interested in the external posture of the body. Specifically he said:
"Some say that 'sitting' means keeping one's body still. This is not true and those who say so are in the wrong direction. However, they themselves not only say this, but also teach it to others. That's a big mistake. "
Sitting Chan means "staying inwardly focused" and "meditating." This is a form of exercise that helps people control their emotions, prevents them from succumbing to external stimuli, and focuses their attention. , to maintain a calm and peaceful mind, to reduce their misery, to become wiser and to achieve a state of unity with nature.
So, sitting Meditation is one of the forms of Meditation, but not the only one! With many years of practice we will be able to be in a state of Meditation throughout the day, in whatever we do.
Beginners begin with sitting or standing meditation, focusing on points and mental imagery. If one can enter the stage of deep concentration, one's breathing will become slow, continuous and deep. Then one will have entered the stage of semi-consciousness, as if sleeping, but without sleeping, as if dreaming but without really dreaming. He relaxes a lot, being able to "see" wonderful senses and to feel intensely satisfied and happy.