What if I told you to stop thinking for a whole minute? Just stop thinking. You know, your thinking muscle: let it relax. I would sound crazy to you. It’s impossible to stop thinking. That means thinking is something we do 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
Thinking is something all of us do for a living, so it’s very important to practice and not let things get out of control. The number one guaranteed way to get better at thinking is a method as old as humans themselves: meditation.
Meditation sometimes can get a bad rap in Christian circles. It is often wrongly associated only with ancient religions, generally Hinduism or Buddhism. There is no need to be ashamed of such an association. The Vedas, Hindu texts, are the oldest written text discovered that mention meditation as a religious practice. However, meditation is something anyone can practice for any reason.
The act of meditation is simple. Just sit alone, try to reduce stimuli to an absolute minimum (lights off is best) and just think. Do not hum. Do not put on music. Certainly do not turn something on the TV. Just sit and think. “Think about what?” you may ask. This is where I have a strong opinion concerning meditation.
When meditating, I highly recommend you do not meditate on any particular topic. Let your mind wander. Think about that warm cookie you had in the caf. Think about how nice your significant other looked today. Think about how cool Zwemer hall would look with a dragon perched on top. Think about anything. Your brain will slowly take you from thought to thought and sort things out.
Many meditation sites or guides are focused on meditation on a particular topic. Topics include: the mystery of God, enlightening yourself or increasing chi flow. Some of these topics may help you, and some you may find to be balogna. Whatever you feel, this is not the type of meditation I am referring to here. The human brain is like a big net that catches important thoughts all at once but never sorts through them until later.
If you go about your busy life, going place to place and thought to thought, and never stop to sort things out, you’ll find yourself feeling like you cannot remember the past week or that your brain feels jumbled. We can all relate to that “now, what was I doing here?” moment. This is a result of never letting your brain sort out your thoughts on its own.
Sitting in silent darkness and letting your brain wander is the perfect way to sort out those day-to-day jumbled thoughts. Your brain is a miracle-machine. It will work things out on its own if you just let it take the reins of your thoughts.
I try to take about 15 minutes every three days to just let my brain figure out what it needs to figure out without my interruption. I also try not to meditate right before bed. I find that can cause some wacky dreams.
So, in conclusion, I highly recommend that this week you take some time to think. Don’t freak out. Just think and let your brain take you on a journey.