Friday, June 26, 2009

Moving Meditation, Exercise, etc?

I am one of those people who cannot meditate without having something to think about. I can't turn my brain off; it will get distracted by even the slightest change in environment. I recently spent several months working in a very remote area that was also exceedingly quiet--during the day, I could rest assured knowing there was not another human being within a 5-mile radius, most of the time even more. I would try to meditate sometimes, when it wasn't too hot and the wind was still, and it was the quietest place you could possibly conceive of--yet I'd still get distracted, if not by my own thoughts (and I was extremely un-stressed then), then by the extremely faint sound of a rare car on the highway 7 miles away, or a slight change in air pressure. Needless to say, since I normally live in a large city, tuning out all senses is pretty difficult and I have a hard time meditating. Yoga classes are kind of a wash for me; I stare at the floor and think about the floorboards too much during the meditations.

Anyway, I do exercise a lot. Some of it requires a fair amount of concentration (bike commuting, f'ex) but when I'm at the gym, I can get into a good rhythm on the treadmill or cross-trainer, put on some music, close my eyes, and completely zone out--and after a while I get a hit of endorphins, so happy times, it's a bit of an ecstatic state, but I don't know what to do with it. I think it has something to do with the rhythmic motion, though, as the other times I've reached the same state have either been when I'm dancing or singing.

So I guess I'm asking, does anyone do any kind of meditation while moving or immediately afterward? What do you focus on? Suggestions for resources? Similar experiences? Any thoughts are welcome.

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