I was sitting in the Café next to my old college, sipping cappucino, when my attention was drawn to an intense conversation between two young girls I recognized as my juniors.
Anisha: You have a dance competition coming up, so instead of practicing together, you sit with your eyes closed? Are you like praying or something?
Rythem: Not really, we meditate. It helps me become a better dancer. It helps the others too.
Ansiha: I don’t understand the connection between sitting with your eyes closed and dancing. You want to become a dancer or a saint?
Rythem: Well, practice is just one aspect of improving my dance. The key is meditation. It helps me stay calm, confident, poised, focussed. It brings so much grace and skill in me. I don’t know how, but it works.
I was amazed that youngsters understand the importance of meditation and that it is actually an ‘in’ thing. Curious, I found myself talking to Rythem a few minutes later. She introduced me to some of her meditator friends. They had all participated in the Yes Plus program of The Art of Living and Iearnt the practice. I asked them, “Why meditation?” and everyone had their own reasons. One girl, in particular, surprised me.
She was so shy when I had met her for the first time, on the day of her orientation. With a little confused face, she would be found sitting in one corner of the room. Now, she was the head girl of the college, very confident in her approach and inspiring others with her words and actions. When I asked her how she changed so much, her answer was, “I always wanted people to look up to me and I found the secret in meditation”.
I remembered what my teacher used to tell me: “Meditation increases positivity in you so your words and actions carry more weight and people start looking up to you. Meditation makes you effective in what you do and helps develop a sense of confidence that what you do is right. With meditation, whatever you do bears fruits.”
I proceeded to the canteen to grab a quick bite and occupied my favourite place. I looked around to see how much had changed. My eyes widened when I saw a short, thin girl sitting next to the water cooler. She was there, sitting in the same position, even when I was in my final year. The only difference was that now some ten other girls were with her. Earlier, she would quietly sit alone with no one to talk to.
I decided to say hello. Was she also into meditation? I almost expected the answer, but I was nevertheless surprised. Meditation had helped her make friends. She shared that meditation made her more sensitive and confident at the same time. She feels at ease with herself and finds it easy to connect with everyone and is able to nourish her friendship with love and care.
Wow. I was stunned with how my past few hours had turned out to be, like it was my day of meeting meditators. Perhaps the universe was playing with me, making me meet these people.
She was standing next to me in a queue in the cafeteria. I remember seeing her in Rythem’s group but did not have a chance to find out much about her experience. I asked her, “So, you also meditate right? How does it help you?”
“I do the cat walk in the rat race with all ease. Meditation is my secret for success. I am confident that my ideas are best among the rest. Whether it is studies or sports or other co-curicular activities, I am a part of it,” she replied in style.
Confidence, popularity, sensitivity, talents, skills, good academic results and basically everything that’s cool - all this for sitting with your eyes closed for 20 minutes everyday. Its not a bad deal after all!
These stories could be yours too. Share your experiences with us. Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and inspire the world to meditate, to find peace and infinity within themselves!
Inspired by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's wisdom talks
By Divya Sachdev