What are spontaneous meditations?
Have You Ever...
— Drifted slowly awake, and lain there in a delicious restfulness for a few moments before opening your eyes?
— Looked at the night sky and felt utter wonder at the vastness?
—Merged so deeply with the melody and rhythm of music you love that your sense of self disappeared in the ocean of sound?
— Felt electricity coursing through your body when you made love? At the moment of orgasm, been filled with brilliance or fireworks? Or in the afterglow, felt your body shimmering and pulsing with a vibrant peace?
— Inhaled a smell so delicious, perhaps your favorite dish when you were really hungry, that you almost swooned?
— Sat by a river, conscious of its steady flow, and entered into a sense of stillness?
— Been so in love that your heart seemed to turn to light?
. . .Then you have already experienced meditative awareness. These are all spontaneous experiences, typically lasting from a few seconds to a few minutes. Attention expands beyond its confines and touches something greater, something of the essence of life. Human beings have been experiencing these sorts of things since before there was the language to speak of them.
Meditative experience is not different than these naturally-occurring moments. It is just intentional. What I am calling a "meditation technique" is paying attention to the rhythm of such an experience, tracking it through all its phases, and returning again and again to be educated by it. Most of what is meant by "practicing meditation" is just spending half an hour a day or so being in the presence of such a quality of attention, then enjoying the effect this has on your daily life. Meditation is the practice of developing your capacity for rich experience.
Everyone is a yogi for half a second when they stop to smell the roses. It’s all there in that moment of conscious, grateful breathing. When you cultivate your gratitude for breath, something good happens at a deep level. You make friends with life.