Mindful meditation and Christian meditation travel along a similar road. While Christian Meditation (Centering Prayer) arrives at the destination of a deep awareness of God’s presence, mindful meditation arrives at the destination of a singular focus of the mind.
Arrival at their destinations, however, can be erratic, turbulent, and chaotic like the formation of the eye of a hurricane. For example, Fr. Laurence Freeman of the World Community for Christian Meditation compares the early stages of Christian Meditation like a monkey jumping erratically from one branch of a tree to another.
In my experience, this monkey-like jumping phase is characterized by both external and internal noises; external noise generated by nature and humans, and internal noise triggered by our thoughts and ideas of our past, present, and future.
These are distractions, but distractions with which we are invited not to enter a wrestling match. We are advised to allow these distractions to pass gently like boats arriving and departing from a dock.
If we remain faithful to the process of quieting, focusing either on a mantra such as “Jesus is Lord”, or being mindful of one sound around us, then we will eventually arrive at a point that the Psalmist describes as, “Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10).
Like the eye of the hurricane, that moment represents the eventual arrival of a distinct disposition we label as “at one with God” or “Awareness.”
“. . . but you have kept the best wine till now” (John 2:11).
You are invited to feast daily on this best wine.