Women Empowering Women

Authors: Linda and Nelly

Podcast: Be Heard Women Empowering Women with Mimi Brier

We enjoyed discussing our book, Reflective Meditation: Cultivating Kindness and Curiosity with Mimi Brier. Although this was Mimi’s first exposure to Reflective Meditation she realized it resonated with other practices in her spiritual life and that “I am meditating more than I thought I was”.

We read a few sections from our book:

Learning to meditate from what comes up in meditation, learning to live from what comes up in life—a conversation between us

What a radical idea, that you could learn to meditate from what comes up in meditation.

Yes, and there is something radical and mysterious in learning to meditate without the specific formulaic instructions you’d Expect.

Though there is something natural and intuitive to this. We all have experiences of doing something, then reflecting back on what we did and seeing how it went. Then making decisions
about what worked and what didn’t work out so well. A popular cliché expresses this pattern –‘hindsight is 20/20.’

So how do we learn together without everyone attempting to follow the same meditation instruction?

Because each of us has different stuff coming up, right? Since we have different lives, different values, different ways our mind and bodies work, then of course we’ll be paying attention to
different things. Sounds like the potential for chaos.

In chaos, though, you can’t find anything to hold on to. We hold certain principles and teachings as the foundation of our practice, but they don’t override your individual experience. You sit quietly so that you can hear the voices in your own inner world. We don’t guide you in meditation, we trust you know something about what is best for you at that moment, in your particular present moment. You learn to have confidence about where meditation guides you. You get better at navigating your own experience.

High ideals with friendliness—a conversation between us

There are such high ideals that cluster around meditation and dharma. Such far-flung fantasies. I remember early on I thought I could excise the young, confused, sometimes scared, and also inspired person I was. It didn’t go that way. But it also didn’t fail to go that way. I’m no longer young, not confused often, and my fear has quieted, though my inspiration lives on.

Excise. Yes, it’s quite harsh language that we have often used on those parts of ourselves. It seems like a familiar pattern to reach high and not quite attain it, then kick ourselves because we couldn’t. User error. I was attracted to the superlative qualities that teachers talked about, but none of us could fully embody. Then we found out we could tread this path with gentleness,
kindness and friendliness. I used to believe that would be too namby-pamby and wouldn’t lead me anywhere much. Was I ever wrong about that!

Listen here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/2158878/13586363-reflective-meditation-in-the-buddha-s-company.mp3?download=true

Watch here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=asgXR1Rnkcc