Walking Meditation

If you find it difficult to sit still and keep your eyes closed whilst meditating, then walking meditation could be good for you.

There are four components to a walking meditation:
· Becoming aware of your breathing
· Noticing your surroundings
· Being conscious and attentive to your body’s movement
· Taking some time to reflect on your meditation experience

Become aware of your breathing in much the same way as you would for the breathing
meditation process. Notice each breath as you breathe in and then breathe out again.
Become conscious of the air filling your lungs and use each exhalation to send out any
distracting thoughts – you'll find that after a little bit of practice, your extraneous thoughts will quite happily ride out of you on a cushion of air! When you start noticing your surroundings, you'll likely be amazed.

We take lots of things for granted in our everyday life and much of what is around us goes completely unnoticed. When you are walking around, notice the different colors that you see. Notice that even blades of grass, which initially appear just "green", are actually varied in color
and hue. You'll find that once you start this tuning in process, you'll notice more and
more things that have previously escaped your attention.

Don't just notice colors. Listen out for sounds. There may be bird song, road noise or the chatter of people or animals. Consciously tune in to these different sounds. Notice the different tunes sung by the birds. If you are in an urban area, pay attention to the different traffic noises. Each car's engine sounds slightly different. So does the sound of wheels on tarmac. You'll find yourself hearing things that have merely passed you by before.

There are also smells to fill your senses. Maybe the aroma of freshly mown grass or the sweet
smell that occurs just after a shower of rain. There are plenty of smells in the atmosphere and the chances are that most of these have slipped past your consciousness.

Tune into your body's movement. Start to notice the light pressure on the soles of your feet as you walk. Be aware of the air brushing onto your skin, whether it's a calm day or a windy one. Pay attention to your body's movement as you walk around. Feel how your arms swing as you walk along.

Notice how you hold your head – is it upright and attentive or a different position? Switch your attention to different body parts as you are walking and you'll be fascinated at what you find.
Once you've completed your walking meditation, take a small amount of time to come back to your normal world. During this period, mentally run through your thoughts and feelings that you experienced during your meditation time. Think what you can do to enhance your experience even further next time you choose to do a walking meditation. Gradually come back from your peaceful site to your regular world.

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