8.1 – Clouds in the Sky

In this video, we're going to be going over one of the first major common obstacles in meditation. And this is, how to deal with a mind that just won't shut off.

I still remember in my early days of meditating, sitting down and trying to focus on my breath, and my mind would just be going wild.

It would just be going at 100 miles an hour, zipping all around from this story to that story. And the harder I tried to focus on my breath, the more my mind would spin.

It was tough because it made me feel like I was no good at meditation.
I felt like I was a failure.

But eventually, I learned that you can actually work with thoughts in the same way that you work with the breath.

And so, in this video we're going to learn how to actually just bring our attention to the thoughts, and stay there, and actually notice the thoughts.

So what do we do when the mind is on overdrive?

Well, just as we've learned in the past, instead of trying to fight the thoughts, we just allow them to happen.

You can just let thoughts come and go.
You don't have to push them away.

And instead, in this practice, we're going to actually bring our attention to the thoughts. We're going to notice thoughts coming and going.

A useful way to think of this is imagining thoughts like clouds floating through the sky. And so, each time a thought comes, you can actually just see it as if it were a cloud floating through the sky.

So, in this practice, we can let our awareness be like the vast, open blue sky.
And each time a thought comes it's just a cloud floating through.

And, what you'll notice is that, just as with clouds, they just come and go.
They're impermanent. They never last for long.

So, when thoughts are getting overbearing, when you're having too many thoughts, just allow them to come and go.

Just see them as clouds floating through the sky.

And again, another thing to remind yourself, is that it doesn't mean you're doing anything wrong if the mind is thinking.

This is just the natural inclination of the mind.
It's what the mind was made to do.
So, when you notice thinking, don't worry about it.

It happens to everyone, even meditators with decades of experience.
So, in this practice, we're just going to bring our attention to thinking.

So, when you're ready to get started, go ahead and click on the next video.


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