Curious about meditation?


Ever since The Beatles sat peacefully in flowing garments with a bearded sage guru, the popularization of meditation has grown each decade. No longer the sole territory of robed monks chanting on a mountaintop, the valuable secular practice of developing greater mindfulness is available here and now to anyone with interest.

Scientific study has shown evidence that the practice of mindfulness meditation is linked to numerous physical and emotional health benefits. Meditation connects us with a natural state of the human mind—at rest, open, and alert. A steady practice allows the mind to relax and settle to cultivate inherent qualities of stability and clarity. Anyone who aspires to greater health, fitness, and well being might consider including a contemplative practice, such as of meditation, along with the usual emphasis on diet and exercise.

“Live your life as an experiment,” encouraged teacher Chogyam Trungpa. Learning to sit quietly with your open heart and mind is a good place to begin this challenge. 

Looking for a contemporary introduction to mindfulness and meditation? Find a copy of Walk Like a Buddha. The author, Lodro Rinzler, explains that we live in a time when “multitasking is the new black.” The practice of meditation helps us to experience one thing more fully.


The book investigates how tending to the moment at hand is especially useful in the face the complexities of daily life. An enjoyable read for anyone with a questioning mind, discover how mindfulness can be a useful tool for life. The author addresses work, relationships, social life and social media, loneliness, doubt, and impermanence.

The late Zen master Suzuki Roshi once told his students: “All of you are perfect just as you are…and you could use a little improvement.“ Slowing down to observe and listen is a practice explored at weekly Thursday evening open house meetings at Shambhala Meditation Group of Buffalo. Anyone is invited to join the groupfor an hour of sitting and walking meditation, followed by a brief contemplative reading and tea. Mindfulness meditation is an experiential practice that is known through doing. A few times each year they offer Learn to Meditate, a three-hour program that is suitable for beginners or anyone who wishes to refresh their understanding of the view and practice.Basic instruction is also available at the Thursday evening meetings.

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September 2014

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