Friends of Godwin Samararatne

Learn to be your best friend and also to be a friend of others. Learn to forgive yourself and others and then heal any wounds that you are carrying.

Thoughts are Coming

When thoughts come we should be aware, mindful that thoughts are coming, and make friends with them, not to have a conflict, and then come back to the breath. But we can be aware of the breath for a few minutes, then again thoughts will come. This is the nature of the mind, that we don’t have much control. So meditation is understanding how our minds work, making friends with our mind and whatever is happening, and training ourselves to slowly, gently come back to the breath.

It is very important even when we are not sitting to continue to be aware and mindful of the thoughts that we are having. Even while relaxing, while eating, we are having thoughts. So whatever we are doing it’s a very good practice to be conscious of our thoughts, not only when we are meditating. We can learn a great deal about our thoughts by just watching them, just asking: What are the thoughts that I’m having?

Stop Thinking

It is not possible to stop thinking. The more we try to stop thinking the more thoughts we have. That is why I said: it is natural that thoughts will arise. So what we are trying to do is to be aware, to be mindful of the thoughts themselves. Thoughts, sounds, sensations, whatever there is in the mind and the body. So in that sort of meditation if you have thoughts there is no need to have a conflict.

Something Special

There is a meditation master in Sri Lanka who says that when we sit, if we think meditation is something special then we will have special problems! So here we are trying to give special attention to the breath and then the breath behaves in an unusual way, and when you ignore the breath it becomes normal.

So don’t see meditation and breathing as something special and just be with it. And even when you are outside, when you think you are not meditating, just continue to have a connection with the breath, to continue to be aware of the breath at other times also.

This Body

Be aware of your body. You can close your eyes and just feel the different sensations, the different movements in your body.

Learning to feel the body, learning to feel friendly towards the body.

Feel grateful that you have this body and that we can use the body for our practice.

If you can relax your body, you can relax your mind. Feeling relaxed is not resisting anything in the body and in the mind.

Please allow your body to breathe naturally. Let the body breathe the way the body likes to breathe.

When the body is exhaling you know that the body is exhaling. When the body is inhaling you know that the body is inhaling. Have your complete and full attention on the in-breath and the out-breath.

It is natural that you will have thoughts. Just know that you are having thoughts. Don’t resist them, don’t dislike them, but pay more and more attention on the in-breath and the out-breath.

If you are having any unpleasant sensations in the body, please learn to be mindful of them, to be aware of them, learning to make friends with them, learning to say okay to unpleasant sensations.

Unpleasant Sensations

It is extremely important to learn to work with unpleasant sensations in whatever forms they arise in the body. Just by knowing them and learning to make friends with them, not to see them as problems: that is the practice, because while meditating if you learn to handle these unpleasant sensations that arise then in everyday life when they arise you know how to handle them. So it is very helpful that these unpleasant sensations arise when you are meditating.

Just to Know

Meditation is just knowing whatever is happening in our mind and body without being concerned: Am I doing it right? Am I doing it wrong? Is it very strange that this should happen?
Just to know what is happening, and can you say okay to whatever is happening, especially if it is unpleasant.

Feeling Good

Close your eyes and spend some time just learning to relax yourself, just to relax your body. Just to feel comfortable with yourself.

Spend some time feeling happy that you are meditating now. Feeling good about what you are trying to learn.
Just know from moment-to-moment what you are hearing, the thoughts that you are having, the sensations you are experiencing in the body.

It is something very simple that everyone can do. What is important is to be alert, to be awake, to be present, to be alive from moment-to-moment.

If you become sleepy and drowsy, open your eyes.

We hear sounds, we have thoughts, we experience sensations, we may be having emotions; just knowing from moment-to-moment all these things that are happening. Making friends with them, learning to say okay to them.

If you are having any unpleasant sensations in the body just be open to them, make friends with them, be aware of them. It’s like learning to say okay to the noises that you are hearing.

Do you know each thought that arises and passes away in your mind?

Self-Confidence

Try to develop self-confidence. To have the self-confidence that you can handle whatever is arising in your mind and body. In meditation this is very important, to have this self-confidence; just to know what is happening in the mind and the body, and then learning from them, being open to them.

Nothing Special

Please do not have high expectations that you are going to achieve something very special. Meditation is nothing special. It’s just being open to ordinary things. It’s nothing extraordinary. Please remember that. Please realise that. This is something beautiful about meditation.

So it is not results that we are going to achieve but the practice itself, that is the result; knowing what is happening is the result, not what comes after. Please remember this. Maybe in our culture there is a lot of emphasis on being goal-oriented, on achieving results. But in meditation the result is the practice. This is what is very interesting about meditation. The result is just being open, knowing what is happening from moment-to-moment, experiencing every moment.

Like Children

Try to be like children, trying to learn, making discoveries about what is happening in our mind and body. It is very important to have this childlike quality of learning, finding out, being curious about what is happening in our mind and body, which is something we take for granted.

Try to see meditation as a voyage of self-discovery, and if we can have this openness then we can learn from any experience we are having. It can be pleasant, it can be unpleasant, but learning to ask the questions: What can I learn from this? What does it show to me? This kind of attitude to meditation is very important.