Arriving Home :: Finding Your Inner Home In Meditation
There’s a deeper recognition of a natural state within you that happens when you meditate. Some say it’s like finding out who you really are for the very first time. While others say it’s more of a remembering, a recollection and return to a familiar sense of “being” long forgotten or lost.
This natural state is accessed namely, when you allow yourself to reach beyond the inner-hustle and bustle of every daily activity and thinking. When you drop-in, or “arrive” as we say in the mindfulness world.
When you arrive to meditation – essentially you are deciding to hit a pause button. You pause long enough to land right smack dab in the present moment. Whether you like it or not. Just the very act of ‘taking your seat’, sitting down on a cushion or a chair, taking a deep breath in and out, feeling your feet on the ground, closing your eyes and settling your attention inwards, you can’t help but arrive a little closer to all the pieces and parts of who you are and how it is you are existing in that moment. There is an inherent “bumping into” ourselves built in when you simply sit down to meditate. And a golden opportunity to be the type of friendly helper you would be relieved and happy to see if you were lost and trying to find your way back home.
Being At Home In Meditation
Through the very practice of meditation, we do in our own way get to meet, greet and point our own heart and mind back to a new or old familiar sense of Home. As we’ve explored in a previous ‘Arriving Home’, a large component of recognizing a feeling of home within is connecting to an internal state of knowing or inner-awareness.
With the upcoming foundational HOME audio meditation course launch, I wanted to unpack and explore all of the ways in which you can access and find a sense of home through your meditation practice.
How To Know You Are Home
Knowing Your Own True Nature
I often begin a new student’s first-time meditation session with the phrase “Welcome Home.” Genuinely, I know deep in my heart that this first introduction of practice is the start of the road home. And not to just any home, but to an inner-home that is unshakeable, completely resilient and undeniably true.
In meditation, as you meet and greet each thought, each current of emotion, each heartbreak, each moment of elation and bliss, you soften a layer which is blocking you from your true authentic nature – a way of being filled with unwavering wellbeing and dare we even say an experience of joy and peace.
When we peel back all of the layers from past conditioning and any hardened scars from our accumulated life sufferings, we begin to also feel our inner basic goodness and unconditional love. Much like a crack in a wall lets through a little bit of light at first – soon the light will catch the particles of dust in the air taking on a bigger expansive, bright and all-pervasive luminous shape. This is our own true nature – a lightness of being, a sense of happiness and ease, and an inner sense of stability within that is all-encompassing and always there.
A Fundamental Okay-ness
When we recognize our deeper states, our individual inner-workings, and a new sense of wellbeing through meditation, we also begin to relax into the part of our own true nature which inherently knows we are all okay. No really, I know this is the last thing we want to believe or hear at times, yet beneath it all, and most likely if you pause and reflect even now in this very moment, you will be able to settle down into a fundamental feeling of being okay. If there are a lot of problems happening in your life, alongside, above and beneath the problems, you are still okay. The loving, knowing awareness that is our mindfulness, plus your own true nature is always pointing us back to this inherent bedrock of okay-ness, also commonly known as equanimity, inner-contentment and ease.
Regardless of whether you are in a season of turmoil, hardship, stress and personal breakdown, or in a season of happiness, abundance of opportunities, comfort and pleasantness, deep down we are always able to access and touch our feet down upon this evenness of mind, heart and fundamental okay-ness. A feeling of being okay, no matter what you may be weathering externally or internally, is one of the hallmark signs that you have found your way home.
Stable Mind, Steady Heart
Think of what the word home means to you… I know when I reflect on what home means, one of the most prominent feelings that comes up is stability. Having stability of home signifies a level of safety and ease in life. If you have ever been without a physical home, or in transition between moves, you might remember that feeling of not necessarily having everything quite organized and in-alignment or the feelings of being groundless, unbalanced and without a solid sense of ground.
The same experience and feelings associated with having a safe, consistent, warm and trustworthy home applies to having an inner home as well. When creating a home through meditation, you do this by cultivating stability in your mind and steadiness in your heart. Stability of mind comes from training your mind to be in the present moment through meditation and steadiness of heart; this is an inherent bi-product of mindfulness, when we learn not to judge ourselves so much. Stability and steadiness make the ground for feeling safe, at ease, warm and relaxed in your own home. This is the warm welcome you receive each time you sit down to meditate. It’s like you are cozying up to your inner home and hearth next to a crackling fire of peace, happiness and contentment.
Finding Familiar Ground
The more we meditate, the more we are able to settle into ourselves. Soon, you become familiar with what it’s like to be you. Hopefully over time, you develop a friendliness with yourself and all your quirky imperfections. Then something beyond who we know ourselves to be starts to knock at the door. As you approach the door of your home, a familiar feeling arises. How do you know who or what is at the door? You really can’t know quite yet, however as you turn the handle your heart swells, you become a little happier and warmer and as the door opens you are met with a deeper feeling of familiarity – a boundless you, a you before the labels, roles, personality and identities put on, a you that you vaguely remember and a you that feels more home than you’ve ever felt before.
I call this moment in meditation ‘The Foundation of Knowing’. There may not be the right words to describe it, or the cognitive mind isn’t able put voice to it, you just simply know you feel safe, at peace, at ease, grounded, balanced and able to be with life exactly as it is happening. You are able to recognize what is happening as it happens, and skillfully be with each and every part of the present moment. This knowing is also awareness. This knowing is the remembering that you are much more than all the selves you’ve made so much effort constructing over the years or how society references you. This knowing is that you are at home in your own awareness, in a stable mind and steady heart, and in the ever present sense of wellbeing that you can rest in anytime and anywhere you decide to arrive, take your seat and turn your attention inwards.
Feeling at home is a state created through the consistency, courage and continuity of meditation. It is a state you can learn to rely on and lean into as you begin, deepen and grow a practice. It is both a personal journey and one that has been walked by millions of human beings across the lifespan of generations who are heeding the call to show up, arrive, begin and find their sense of home within.
HOME – our 3 series audio meditation course created to guide you through the path of practice is launching December 13th. To take your first step towards home or to continue making progress down the road, mark your calendars for Week 1 ‘Begin’ debuting next week in our online practice space.
May we all find our way home
With Love, Amanda
* A thank you to Mark Coleman for the phrase “A Fundamental Okay-ness”. To see more of Mark’s teachings visit his web home here.