National relaxation day encourages us to slow down and unwind. It’s a day to focus on taking care of ourselves and take a moment to relax. Ian Thompson started his day by setting an alarm to remind him to relax from 2 to 2:30 pm. He wanted to try and take out some time for meditation today. As the morning went by and afternoon came, a couple of his new bosses took him to lunch. It was the first week of his job and he was a little anxious about everything; worrying about little things.
Lunch ended in time, after a brisk walk and a polite greeting. He found himself in a long, quiet, simple room, scattered with rugs and a few square oversized pillows, where Northeastern University’s sacred space is.
The meditation was led by Ben Gincley, a fifth-year Northeastern student from New Jersey. Everyone was supposed to remove their shoes and sit in a comfortable position. It started with an introduction to all the people present and then Ben asked us them to partially or completely shut their eyes, and to sit in a sense of sustainable posture.
While meditating our focus should be on how we are feeling. What is going on in one’s mind? How does it make one feel? As time went by, they were told to focus on their breathing patterns and to take in long breaths.
His mind started wondering about a hundred different things. First, about his grocery list, then the weeds in his driveway that he should have pulled weeks ago, whether he should make my lunch at night, if the train was going to keep arriving early. He thought about his good friend, Steve, and the funeral of his wife two hours ago in Philadelphia. He thought about the loneliness and sadness Steve must be feeling today amid so many people who love him.
When they opened their eyes again, Ben talked about how they should focus on their breaths, feel the heart beating, and be alive in the moment. Meditating can often feel like you have just woken up from a conscious dream. Sooner or later one can feel the mind at peace.