Meditation Basics

Inspiring change from within

The path of the Warrior is lifelong, and mastery is often simply staying on the path.

- Richard Strozzi Heckler, In Search of the Warrior Spirit

The Way of the Warrior

The Mind Can Be a Frisky Monkey

Your meditative efforts can sometimes be discouraging. You know those days: your body won't relax and you mind skips around out of control. Instead of experiencing that calm sense of peace and oneness with the world, nothing but anxious thoughts trip the light fantastic in your head. The tendency is to clench your teeth and demand order. However, this simply doesn't work. To quote one of my favorite teachers, George Curnoles, "Your mind is like a frisky monkey. Don't beat your monkey."

No, that's not an R-rated statement, but it is a realistic way to look at how your mind works.
You are invited to subscribe to our free meditation series. Learn to meditate successfully. Join us in the journey.

If you find yourself unable to focus on the goal of your meditation, whether it is a candle flame, a sound, a thought, a concept, give yourself a break. Your mind is just acting perfectly normal. Our minds and thought processes are so complex, that we can literally hold multi-dimensional focuses at the same time. When we are able to so easily multi-task, why would you think that the mind will simply settle down when asked? Your mind needs to be trained.

If you let yourself relax during your meditation exercise, your mind will often head off in the direction of that latest thought, image, sound, dream or problem you're working on. If you are at an early phase of developing your meditation skills, just let the mind go. Here's the secret: go ahead and follow the thought rather than wrench yourself back with frustration to the original goal.

So, how will you be able to control your thoughts and direct your meditations if you do this? Easy. While you let your mind take those avenues of exploration, just pay attention. Instead of waking up in a few minutes to realize that you are no longer where you wanted to focus, just follow the trail. Then see if you can follow the trail backwards to the point you diverted from your goal. This will develop a strong focused mind and in no time at all, you'll be a successful, focused meditator.

Using this approach, the basic meditation techniques can be quickly absorbed since you'll avoid the frustration of fighting your wandering mind and simply follow it's wanderings, gently bringing the mind back to your intended focus.

Be kind to that little monkey of a mind and it will serve you well.

©2005 TAO Consultants, Inc. All rights reserved.
Chesa Keane has taught meditation and self-help for more than 30 years. To receive your free starter Basic Meditation and Basic Relaxation Techniques and an introduction to a unique meditation tool, the TAO Totem, visit: