Few months back I did a 21 day Abundance challenge and enjoyed it immensely. It opened up few areas of my life that I otherwise wouldn’t have ventured into. So when I received the notification for 21 Day Meditation challenge by Art of Living foundation I grabbed it.
I have followed AOL foundation (Art of Living) on and off and have done few courses with them. I also practice Sudarshan kriya from time to time. The meditations were to be facilitated by Gurudev (Sri Sri Ravishankar) himself and that was the main attraction for me to enrol.
The timing was also perfect. 7.30 in the evening just before dinner and generally this time slot doesn’t have too many demands from lady of the house.
There was a schedule given and each day had specific meditations. I decided to maintain a diary of my experiences after each mediation and I am sharing my observations from few particular days.
Day 1: Meditation For Beginners: The first day was for introduction on how to meditate. It was for 10 minutes and 10 minutes passed by swiftly.
Day 2: Art of deep relaxation: This went on for 25 minutes but again time flew by similar to day 1. Surprisingly, I couldn’t sleep at all that night. Instead of being relaxed I felt alert through the night.
Day 3: What the Eyes Reveal: It involved some exercises for eyes. It felt funny to do those and reminded me of Madhuri Dixit’s famous eye rolls from a song. This was very relaxing for the face. Again that night I had disturbed sleep.
Day 4: The Gift of Life: A peaceful experience. We were asked the look inwardly and let go of any efforts. In fact in all meditations Gurudev instructed the participants to be effortless with body and thoughts and not to try hard. I managed to do it with body on day 4. The sleep quality was better.
Day 5: Beyond the Body: This is where the magic happened to me. This was by far the best experience till now. It happened on teachers day and funnily I thought of my favourite teacher from 4th grade and I also thought of the AOL teacher with whom I did my first AOL course. It was immensely relaxing experience. In fact I was in that state for most of the evening. Sleep quality was fantastic. I woke up really refreshed
Day 7: sound of silence : Contrary to the title, this meditation involved listening to the sounds around you as effortless as you can. In the process of listening the sounds you let go of the thoughts you have in your mind. In normal course this is the meditation I do. I like to hear the sounds around me.
Day 8: The fire within: It was about our digestive health. This meditation involved being aware of what is going in your body and focusing on digestive systems. I recommend this meditation to people who have issues with digestive health. As for me I did feel lighter the next day.
Day 10: Bouncing Awareness : This meditation had few exercises in the beginning and some new elements were introduced to experience the energy created in your body. This was the day where I was closest to thoughts free mind and it happened effortlessly.
Day 14: What about thought?: 14 days in to meditation, I got used to the practice and I found it easier to go thought free for most of the time on this day. Meditation started getting easier.
Day 16: Improve sleep quality: – Again I recommend this to those who have sleep problems. Bhramari Pranayam was taught during this and overall it was a very soothing experience. Sleep quality was fantastic again.
Day 21: Manifesting Intention: We all have certain desires and goals and often confused on how to achieve them. The last meditation was about connecting with your desires and manifesting them to achieve it. I found this bit technical.
Meditation experience is very personal. You may have a different experience than I did. Few thoughts came to my mind, sometimes I was distracted , sometimes I felt emotional and sometimes I smiled to myself.
I experienced calmness. I was going through a phase where I had disturbed sleep and meditation definitely improved my sleep quality. I also felt in control of myself. I managed to reduce my social media time, food binging which I am really proud of. I also felt energetic and motivated.
The big one however was people, places and moments flashing in my mind in meditative state. I had my 4th grade teacher, AOL teacher who taught Sudarshan kriya, a friend whom we lost untimely and my dad smiling at me. I relived the moment when I saw my daughter for the first time after she was born.
I enjoyed these 21 days. I looked forward to those 30 minutes.Overall I felt good. I called these 30 minutes as Medi Time. How mani-pedi is spa for your hand and feet, Medi is spa for your soul. Go and indulge yourself!
Note: Meditations from this challenge is available on AOL site from this link https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLH-0HZ0SQ_PF8YaQAGLhXN1KE-9Wg3i1Mc