Well, I am NOT into Zen meditation....but I do PRAY and meditate on God and His creation on my hikes and walks. I always feel at such peace to know that God loved me enough to make such beauty for me to enjoy. The most important thing for us in getting out to walk or hike, is to enjoy every moment, to absorb the quiet and to realize that there IS so much more to life! WOO!
In the beginning, I found walking meditation instruction through a zendo (zen center) and also a very good instructions from books from zen master Thich Nhat Hanh. The most useful one I found, though, was BREATHWALK BY DR DHARMA SINGH KHALSA. Technically he is a yoga guy, but the technique is similar and less esoteric. I would consider traditional walking meditation more meditation than fitness. I would consider the Breathwalk technique more of a combination of fitness and meditation, even though it is also yoga. Now that is multitasking. Dr. Dharma has a website and I think he might have some more info about it on his website.
what a fantastic article! I'm looking forward to giving this a try on my walk today.
9/2/2009 9:23:34 PM
Walking time for me is being outside in the natural world, which feeds me so much! I feel hope and gratitude when I walk outdoors. Even if I do my stationary bike, or my treadmill for cardio, I must walk with Dover, my doggie, so that we can breathe the outdoor smells as the seasons change, and see the gifts all around us! The earth is abundant!
7/2/2009 3:24:24 PM
I have recently joined SparkPeople and this article has reminded me how enjoyable walking is. Last year I was walking 3 miles a day over the back road and although I did not meditate this way, I did alot of praying and thanking God for the beauty and wonder of the the nature around me. I'm going to start walking again!
Many communities now have a labyrinth somewhere in the area. In St. Louis, there is more than one. Although they are often sponsored by a religious organization, they are typically free, open to the public, and nothing obligates the participants to any specific kind of intention. (meaning you can be an atheist, thinking your own thoughts) At the middle of the one I go to sometimes, there is a tree on which people leave a physical item showing that their intention is to free themselves from its (material/commercial/stress-inducing . . .) drag. It's a very interesting and thought-provoking collection.
If you have a labyrinth available to you and are interested in trying walking meditation, I'd highly recommend trying it out to see if it is right for you.
I am Catholic and pray the rosary! For those of you that don't know about this form of meditation. We concentrate on different aspects or mysteries of Christ's life during each of the five decades of the rosary. This makes the walking go very fast. I also pray for different intentions for the health and happiness of others. For anyone that is interested there are lots of sights that can tell you how to pray the rosary and no beads are required! I use my 10 fingers to count where I am at. You don't have to be Catholic either.
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