Wake Up and Smell the Roses

by Mary Pomerantz

Mary wrote this post based on a discourse Sant Rajinder Singh Ji Maharaj gave earlier this year.

Sometimes old sayings are as apropos today as they were long ago.  For instance there is an old saying, “Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today,” that is meaningful to anyone who meditates.

We all know the benefits of meditation:

  1. If we sit regularly, meditation helps us to be disciplined, not only in our meditations, but in other activities in our lives.
  2. Meditation improves our concentration.
  3. Meditation brings peace and calm to our soul.  It stays with us long after we have stopped meditating, making our lives more peaceful, too.
  4. With the peace that increases in our lives through meditation, we will enjoy great physical benefits, such as lower blood pressure and fewer stress related illnesses.
  5. Through meditation our closeness to God increases.  Our focus will be on our spiritual lives, instead of outwardly on our physical lives.

As Sant Rajinder Singh Ji Maharaj has said,

Wherever we focus our attention, that’s what we’ll become. And so as we meditate, then we are going to be getting to a state where our closeness with God will be experienced by us more and more and more.  God is within us. Nothing can be closer to us than God, but we don’t experience it because our mind is taking our attention and putting into the outer world.

And yet even knowing all of the benefits that we can have if we meditate, we still put it off, always having some excuse as to why we haven’t got the time.  It reminds me of a story that Sant Rajinder Singh Ji Maharaj tells.

A saint had a disciple that he was fond of and liked to visit.  When he first started visiting him, this disciple was a young man.  At the end of every visit the saint would ask the young man if he was meditating for the suggested period of time every day.

The young man would say, “You know, I would like to meditate but my studies are so important that all my time is taken up preparing for examinations.  When I graduate from college and get my degree, I will meditate.”

Finally the time came when the young man graduated and on his next visit, the saint said to him, “Now that you have more time on your hands, you must be sitting for meditation more often.”

The young man told him, “I thought when college was over, I would have lots of time but now, I must find a job and that takes all my spare hours.  When I have found a job, I will have all the time I need to attend to my spiritual practices.”

When he landed the ideal job, the saint again asked him if he was meditating regularly, and the young man told him that now that he was settled in a job, his parents were urging him to get married and start a family and he was preoccupied with the search for a spouse.  When he was married and living the life of a householder, he was sure that he would meditate every day.

As is the case, time flies and the outer activities of life seem to take precedence over our spiritual life.  After the young man married, he had to raise a family.  As his family was growing, he had to attend to his career, making sure his promotions and raises came in a timely manner.  Once his children were almost grown, he had to find them good colleges to attend.  Their own time came to marry and he was preoccupied with that.

There came a time when the man was no longer young and the saint came by to visit.  He asked the old man, who was now retired, if he had finally found the time to meditate and again, the man had a ready excuse.

“My grandchildren are here now and I must help to look after their lives.  When they are launched in life, I will look to my meditation practice.”

Unfortunately, the man passed away without ever realizing the true purpose for which he was born, to know himself and to know that he truly was a part of God.

As another old saying goes, time and tide wait for no one.  We can’t continue to put off our spiritual practices because none of us knows how much time we have been allotted in life.  We could have years or we could only have minutes.  Wouldn’t it be better to start NOW to meditate regularly?  In order to reap those benefits of meditation, we have to put in regular time to sit.  And we will begin to see a change in our lives because as Sant Rajinder Singh Ji Maharaj tells us,

Slowly, slowly, slowly, as we sit down to meditate regularly, these benefits start to become a part of our life because we are now living the teachings in our life and not just hearing them and letting them go out.

So, wake up and smell the roses and don’t put off until tomorrow the meditation that you could do today!

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