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The workshop started out with the community gathering over tea. We had time to catch up with friends and meet new people before the workshop began, which I loved. It seems all too often, you sign up for a workshop and you go right into the teachings and leave immediately after, without connection with the other attendees.
After about thirty minutes of chatting over tea, we moved into the meditation room. James began the meditation part of the workshop with stories of how he began his meditation journey. His beautiful story telling abilities along with his sense of humor had everyone’s full attention immediately. Somehow he made meditation and being fully present seem super easy!
We started out with a few minutes of moving the physical body. “An easy way out of the mind is through the body,” said James. "And when we get out of our head, we get into the present moment." James then walked us through 3 simple "Come to Your Senses" practices, as a way to flow into the present moment. These three tools can be used anywhere, anytime and are great for when we find ourselves in stressful situations, find ourselves anxious or caught up in our thinking.
3 Ways to "Come to Your Senses"
1. Close your eyes and ask yourself, “What is the softest thing I hear?”
2. Look around – wherever you are at the time - and ask yourself, “What is the subtlest shadow I see, what is the faintest pattern I notice?”
3. Closing eyes again and asking, “what sensations do I feel in body right now, what is the softest feeling I can detect in my body?” Begin to notice what you are aware of in your body.
James explained that when we are in the present moment, we are more grounded and when we are more grounded, we can more easily tune into the flow of life. When we are in the flow, we are a part of life, rather than just our thoughts about life. It is in this state, that we naturally become more open, compassionate and even more efficient.
James then took us into a meditation, where we used a mantra. Mantra is a word or sound repeated to aid concentration in meditation. The type of meditation he guided us through took us to a deep and restful place within us, a place of contentment. As James says “True happiness lies within.” I can honestly say, in just this short workshop, he helped all of us tap in a little deeper to ourselves. It was such a beautiful experience and I am looking forward to taking one of James Brown's Vedic Meditation workshops. If you want to learn more about Vedic Meditation and James Brown, you can visit his website www.vedicpathmeditation.com or follow him on Facebook.