Get power in a blink

Let us play a game. Quickly close and open your eyes, just the way you blink. Close and open your eyes again. What did you see when your eyes were closed? Nothing? That is how proximate the meditative experience is to us. You can just blink your eyes for a second and immerse in the emptiness within your self. This can be considered symbolic of the Buddha’s famous teaching of taking refuge in the island of yourself:

Make an island of yourself,
make yourself your refuge;
there is no other refuge.
Make truth your island,
make truth your refuge;
there is no other refuge.

Truth, in its purest form, is non-judgmental. Here truth is not a normative moral idea. Instead, truth alludes to the contemplation of “isness” or the nature of things as they do not have mental and emotional interpretation. That is why the breath is a popular anchor in many meditation techniques because it is a pure neutral experience. Breath is a very good example of awareness of truth, as it is. It is also a constant in our lives, which makes it an ideal anchor to return to a state of pure awareness.
This blinking is very effective and easy exercise. While going through a regular day, we get lost in the maze of events and happenings around us. Sometimes it’s like moving around with a heavy load. This hampers our straight thinking and makes us crave for clarity and freshness of perspective to perform our tasks in an efficient and productive manner.
Taking a deep breath and closing both eyes for a short power-break is a quick tool accessible to us at all times and in all situations for restoring our energy and freshening up the mind. Can you imagine how convenient this is in the middle of a heated business discussion or argument? You can remain physically present in such discussions yet, at the level of your consciousness, take refuge in the deep peace within yourself. It is like enjoying the experience of a private treasure island hidden within you, where you can escape every time you feel entangled in the web of worldly chaos.
It is good to practice the mantra of returning to yourself, like our cellular phones and computer screens go into the auto-power save mode every few minutes when not in use. Learn to go to your inner power saver treasure island of peace and refuge at every given opportunity during a routine day. You can indulge in this luxury while sitting, walking, eating, working or engaging in any other daily activity. When you find your mind wandering, simply whisper “come back to yourself” and watch the focus of your attention return to the job at hand!

— Poonam Srivastava’s book of Zen poetry, A Moment for the Mind, which expounds on the
practice of Mindfulness Meditation. She is also involved in popularising new ideas of change in the social sector. She can be contacted at

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