Ever found yourself lost in thoughts throughout your entire meditation?
You haven’t wasted your time, or failed.
Meditation teacher David Simon would often tell his students:
“The thought I’m having thoughts may be the most important thought you have ever thought, because before you had that thought, you may not have even known you were having thoughts. You probably thought you were your thoughts.”
(from Seven Myths About Meditation by Deepak Chopra)
The experienced meditator is not someone who’s mind has stopped wandering, but someone who is very used to beginning again.
Simply noticing that you are having thoughts is a breakthrough. Your reference point shifts from identifying with the thoughts to the awareness that recognises thoughts as thoughts.
And that’s the training: we get lost in thoughts, we notice, we gently come back to the awareness of the breath, or the present moment.
As we identify less with our thoughts and stories, and relate more and more from this awareness, we find benefit from the great openness, equality and sense of well-being that it seems to bring.