You can be standing, seated or lying for this brief meditation, stuck in a line at a supermarket or in a traffic jam (with eyes open not closed!) that is the beauty and versatility of it. The hardest thing about this practice is remembering to do it.
Picture a mountain, with a wide solid base, the peak extending upward reaching up beyond clouds and birds circling revealing its summit to the expansive blue skies above.
See that mountain now reflected in a large lake, picture the mountain and the reflection of it directly below. The lake when its calm is flat and acts as a mirror to the mountain and on such days you can look into the lake and see all the way to the rocks at the bottom, the fish swimming around.
Visualise now a breeze creating ripples across the surface and the mountain reflection becoming blurred, then this breeze increases in strength and the ripples become waves, whipping up the sand and grit from the depths of the lake, muddying the water and causing the mountain’s reflection to no longer be visible.
Gradually the wind returns to a gentle breeze and slowly the ripples subside, the sand and sediment sink back down to the the bottom of the lake and again we see the image of the mountain more clearly
The mountain symbolises us, our soul, our spirit (purusha). The lake personifies our consciousness our awareness (citta) and the ripples, the movements of the water represent our thoughts and feelings (vrittis). Even on the calmest day the movement of the water never stops, from fish fleeting below the surface or snow melt trickling down from the mountain into the lake, in this same way our thoughts never cease. Our challenge then is to dwell in our own nature (the mountains reflection) whilst still engaging our thoughts and feelings. That is the purpose of yoga, to help us understand all elements of ourselves alongside the many fluctuations of an erratic mind.
Believe it or not a type of meditation can still occur even when the mind is chattering away. The energy we call the mind is dynamic, When we pause in stillness regularly we can become aware of the part of the mind that is untouched by thought. The part that is as if we have dived deep into that lake and reached the depths at the bottom where it is calm and quiet .The time the mental chatter continues on the surface.
In other words the mind can keep thinking ,the ripples, the waves keep moving but from down there deep below the surface we are no longer affected by them.
A regular meditation practice can in time achieve this ability to be unaffected by thoughts, stresses and Vrittis. It gives us the strength of non attachment from what is happening on the surface and enables us to stay within the depth of calm and silence at the bottom of the lake .
image beautifully captured by Laura at Fern and Essence branding fernandessencebranding.co.uk