Away with snarkiness

I’ve been thinking about a comment on a blog I came across recently (okay, it’s Rivers Cuomo’s website…see my last post, lol :). Anyway, the comment was in response to a post by Cuomo about the benefits of Vipassana meditation in his life.

Inexplicably, the commenter felt the need to suggest his own meditation practice to Cuomo instead of Vipassana. He promoted his practice as “neutral” rather than life improving, in contrast to Vipassana, and stated that Vipassana meditation and eliminating undesired negative emotions “will make you flat rather than happy because there is nothing to contrast the happiness with.”

I felt annoyed and found myself wanting to add my own comment saying, “News flash–Vipassana meditation is precisely about life improvement, through equanimity and panna. It’s kind of the point. We aren’t interested in ‘neutral’ practice, whatever that means. And no, it doesn’t make you ‘flat.'” In the next instant, I caught myself and called out my own snarkiness (phew! my practice is working!). I tried to send that guy some metta instead. I’m glad he is meditating in a way that makes sense to him, and was probably just trying to be helpful in his own way.

But his comment did get me thinking about the uniqueness of our practice and why we practice Vipassana meditation rather than something else. In a nutshell, I would say that I practice Vipassana to be a more loving person, and more specifically, to cultivate my capacity for unconditional love and compassion. I feel that it is necessary to work with my deep-rooted mental habit patterns to do this.

Why do you meditate? To achieve liberation? To de-stress? To find deeper meaning in life? Any brave souls willing to give it a go in the comments? Perhaps sharing our perspectives can help inspire our collective daily practice. Have a great day!

“Continuity is the secret to success.”  — Goenka

 

This entry was posted in Personal Experiences by Ryan Shelton. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ryan Shelton

While I'm currently married to a beautiful woman while teaching physics at Padua Academy, these descriptors fail to capture the totality of my adventurous life. I have hiked over 1700 miles, traveled to 5 continents, managed a bakery, started a meditation center, counseled troubled teens, attended Duke, UNC, and Harvard, protected forests as a wildland firefighter, volunteered thousands of hours with Americorps, rafted the Grand Canyon, SCUBA dived on the Great Barrier Reef, and continues to find new adventures. I hope my writing encourages you to pursue your dreams and be the best version of yourself while supporting your communities to work together to solve the current challenges in our world.

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