I have a great free app on my iPad called Insight Timer. It is available for iPhone and Android. I have been trying to learn to center myself in quiet and meditate for years. This app offers a timer you can set, or guided meditations, music, sleep settings, talks, courses, etc.
For me this interest started in guided Christian meditation and also reading about research by Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph. D. regarding the power of mediation to heal and reduce suffering, most notably in his volume “Full Catastrophe Living.” (What a title for today!) Then in 2006 I read J. David Muyskens “Forty Days to A Closer Walk with God.” John Main, a Benedictine monk, wrote many works. “The Way of Unknowing’, “Word into Silence”, and “The Heart of Creation” among others. In each book I read the emphasis was upon PRACTICE. This is not a sudden talent. Only practice draws us deeper and closer to God and helps us into as the Quakers call it “the center down silence.”
If you are interested in any of these titles you can likely find them used at Abe Books or new at other online stores.
The guided meditation I have listened to the last two mornings has reminded me that centering, meditation, etc. can help us strengthen our immune system. If there were EVER a time we all need strong immune systems, that time is now.
Even if you have never tried meditation before, I urge you to try it this week and the weeks to come as we battle the pandemic. One method is to recite Ps 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God.” Then say it again with “Be still and know that I am,” deleting one word each time until you get to “Be.”
Center your mind, slow your breathing, rest in the quietness. Let thoughts float past. Do not cling to any thought. When you realize you did cling to a thought, gently say “thinking, thinking” and return to your breath. Some say while breathing in, think “Breathing in” and while breathing out think, “Breathing out.” Whatever helps you detach from the angst of 2020 and be still.
Why does this strengthen our immune system? If we do not detach from all this fear, our flight or fright response stays engaged and soon we are weaker than we could be.