It seems like it should be a simple question, but it’s like asking what love is. There are so many aspects to it, so many ideas about it, and so on
many ways to see that meditation does not rot in the reduction of one quick response. The best thing I can do is this: Meditation means ways to make the mind understand itself.
I don’t mean to “understand” in a logical way, the way a neuropsychologist understands brain activity patterns. That’s it
understanding facts but not the experience of inner knowledge. Buddhist understanding begins from within and sees what is happening here, right now, in our heads. Meditation helps you to understand why and how your mind moves and thinks and wants by letting you see these things as they happen.
And meditation goes beyond this. You start with every other way Eightfold – or another clever and compassionate approach, like other religions that offer. When you add meditation, you gain the power to change your mind. Really. You can change the way your mind works.
Why should you change your mind? The most common reason is to be very happy. If you use the meditation tool to open the processes of your mind, you can rearrange it to remove greed, ignorance, and hatred, to put you in a calm, contented, intelligent, loving, and happy way. Who wouldn’t want that?
Now why doesn’t everyone meditate? Two main reasons. First, some people are taught that meditation is incompatible with religion and that one is vulnerable to the influence of evil spirits. I’m not kidding; this is the official position of the Roman Catholic Church as I write this letter. This is basically ignorant and dangerou
Looking at Buddhism
look it’s better I don’t say anything about it anymore. I do not want to get into the wrong conversation!
There is a better reason for people to avoid meditation: It can be very difficult. Meditation is hard to resist. Sometimes our minds do not want to let go of our sense of urgency and selfishness. We have been working on that idea since we were little, and at some point it is necessary to survive, so we stick to it. We resist the temptation to indulge in questionable entertainment. This may sound silly, like something no one wants, but most of us always feel this way. Think about yourself
honestly. Given your choice, do you not always feel a strong desire to do something that is more enjoyable, and happier? If so, join the club; he is a human being.
The problem is, the pursuit of pleasure and pleasure is far from ideal. In the end it always fails completely as we die. It cannot be the path to happiness. Real happiness comes from changing your mind after learning how it works. Meditation can get you there because it reveals the workings of your mind and allows you to adjust your thinking.
Because of their resistance to meditation, and because it takes time, energy, peaceful space, and little knowledge, most people in the world do not meditate.
Even most Buddhists do not meditate, and one can become a very good Buddhist without meditation. However, most young people who are interested in Buddhism meditate, and they are right. For many people it offers one very strong Push going forward along the way.