Why Meditate

Why Meditate?

There is no question that each person prefers joy over sorrow, happiness over pain, peace over anxiety, and contentment over dissatisfaction. If you take a moment to examine, it is clear that joy and sorrow, happiness and pain, peace and anxiety, and contentment and dissatisfaction all arise from and depend upon your mind. One person in a certain situation will react with anxiety, anger, sadness, or despair while another in the same set of circumstances will maintain equanimity, kindness, and even joy. There is no difference in the environmental circumstances, so why should one person experience great suffering while another experiences peace? The reason has to do with the state of mind of each individual. Certainly, you have some minimal control and influence over your environment, but you can never completely master the external world. However, you can master your mind. Countless examples of Buddhist masters both past and present (such as the Buddha, Milarepa, the Dalai Lama, and Thich Nhat Hanh) show that transformation and mastery of the mind is possible. Since you wish to be happy, and because happiness depends primarily on your mind, and because your mind is really what you have the most power over, and since you can see that this transformation of mind is possible as demonstrated by countless Buddhist practitioners over the past 2500 years, and because meditation is the primary method of doing this, it is important and worthwhile to practice meditation. Peace Ben

Ben Mikolaj