“Sleep is the Best Meditation” – Dalai Lama
I was browsing on my Facebook and I stumbled on an image of Dalai Lama with a quote that says “Sleep Is The Best Meditation”. I have to admit, I am not a meditation guru nor a seasoned meditation practitioner. In fact, I have just resumed the practice only 6 months back. (I was introduced to mindfulness meditation in my early 20s). Meditation is a funny thing, you would not realize the wonder it does to you until you stopped practicing it.
But if we are to talk about sleeping, I sure do have a lot to say on the subject. No, seriously. My sleep habit has undergone a huge change during my college years until now. I used to have difficulty falling asleep in college years, probably due to the mind having excessive unspent energy that keeps me awake deep into the night.
But in my working days and further into the period when I was running my own business, sleep happens naturally. And then divorce and business failure wreck my sleep habit. I’m sure most of you would experience some changes in your sleep habit and would realize that a good quality sleep will do wonder to you the next morning.
Deep Sleep is the Key
I always associate meditation with the result of having a calm, peaceful mind after the session. And if we are to achieve the same refreshing effect that meditation could, then nothing less than a deep quality sleep will do that. I think the keyword that is missing from the statement, that sleep is the best meditation is “Deep Sleep”.
Ever gone to bed with a dozen of worries on your head, or burdened with negative emotions and thought? Or how about how sleep is torture during a spell of depression? When you sleep without a calm and peaceful mind, then you wake up weary and tired, not much better than the state before you slept.
I know that there are facts that compared the compared delta brain waves of sleeping and meditation. It is said to be around 0.5-2Hz. It is also said that deep sleep has a restorative effect on our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual energy.
Well, I am not going to dispute that, but we are again in the age where we are burdened with responsibilities of career and family. Not to mention the stress that comes with meeting financial ends. It is a blessing for many that sleep, in any forms would eventually come. As of whether it is a night of deep restorative sleep, that is a privilege.
Deep sleep becomes elusive, and yet much needed.
Like it or not, we can pride ourselves on getting as little sleep as possible. We could go juggling multiple tasks and being everywhere at once. But it doesn’t do us good, especially on our health and the results that we are getting. It could even cause burn-outs which may take us even extra efforts to recover from. No, we do not even want to go to that.
So, if it near impossible to get a good restorative sleep the conventional way, then I figure I have to tweak the process around. Instead of hoping for a deep sleep that could have the restorative benefit to the mind, I listened to guided meditation audios before sleeping. It helps to bring the mind to a calm and peaceful state. And as I went to sleep in this mental state, it is no surprise that I woke up with a clearer refreshed mind the morning. Call it a mental sleeping pill if you want, but at least it works for me.
Since late 2015, I’ve been exploring guided meditation audios (along with Law of Attraction and Energy Clearance), and to my delight, I found at least two that does the job of guiding the mind to calm down. Especially when I overworked my mind with stress and anxiety. It is an extremely relaxing experience as I felt my thought process slowing down in just minutes as I listened to the meditation audio.