What is the New Zen?
“I have so much free time during the day, it’s so easy to throw in a meditation session every once in awhile,” said no one ever.
Sound familiar? Didn’t think so. Funny how that works - the more we need it, the less we have time for it. The ultimate Zen paradox. Especially now, with our world of smartphones and Facebook and Snapchat and WhatsApp, we’re just bombarded with info every second of the day. I think it’s safe to say we can all use that meditation chill pill no one has time for.
We’re in dire need of some new breed of Zen to help us out of this mess. We have too much going on, causing more stress and less time to flush it all out of our system - a double whammy. Lucky for you, meditation doesn't have to be what you might think it is. Clearing a room and sitting still in silence (or guided with a headset) while trying to “stay present” for an entire half hour is probably the first thing that comes to your head, isn’t it?
But it doesn’t have to be.
We’re all guilty of the “not enough time” or “too busy” excuses for meditating and so never end up taking on the habit. Ironically it’s not having enough time that means we probably need to even more. Since, y’know, it’s always the busiest minds that are the most stressed.
So how do you do it? This is where passive meditation or sense meditation as we like to call it comes into play, a way to bring the super chill vibe of “don’t worry, I got this” into everything you do. A modernized version of mindful living if you will.
Now I know, technically meditation is already passive in nature, but what I‘m referring to here is holding a state of relaxed presence in everything you do versus the actual activity of meditating for 20 minutes or however long.
This is a modern approach to meditation that fits perfectly into your jam-packed life. Through this you gradually shift your mindset into a calmer, more Zen-like state as you go by your day, doing everything you would normally do.
What’s cool is that this works well not only for meditation newbies who have no idea what they’re getting into, but also for experienced meditators to help them support that clearer mind all day long. A sort of fill in the blanks between active meditation sessions as we like to call it.
OK Enough Talk, How Does it Work?
Sense meditation starts with setting up your living environment into one that encourages calm and focus that gets your head in the right place. From that set up, the clarity and steadiness of mindfulness slowly drips its way into everything you do. You’ll gradually begin to notice a subtle shift in mindset that holds a vibe of relaxation and ease.
A diffuser fills your home with soothing scents.
So most meditation practices teach you that your physical senses - sight, hearing, smell, touch and taste - are among the best ways to crack into a state of presence. What happens when we experience any of these senses, is our inner attention focuses fully on that momentary experience and we stop our thinking minds, if only for a few milliseconds.
Now for most of us that pause lasts less than a second, nothing but peanuts to the Zen masters who go into that feeling for minutes or even hours (sometimes days on certain retreats). This “micro meditation” approach begins with the senses to break our thinking minds and instead divert our awareness to that particular sense perception.
Not to mention we like to focus on natural sense perceptions, as our minds are biologically wired to reduce stress in natural environments, so why not give ourselves that extra boost.
Now Where Do You Guys Come in?
We offer a lifestyle of passive meditation through our product lines, each collection exploring its own sense to help you get in touch with a calmer mind. It’s a gradual process that starts with being aware of the sense we provide in the background of your day to align your mind with a state of presence in small bite-sized chunks.
A deep whiff of scented diffuser mist, for example, can be seen as a brief 2 second micro meditation that slowly aligns your mind with presence. Try this out with anything. Cut open an orange and take a good sniff of the juicy, succulent, tangy smell that fills your nose and you’ll see what I mean.
Unlike other meditation practices you don’t really need to do anything, like clear a room, put on headphones, sit still and listen to a guiding voice for 20 minutes as you attempt to clear your mind. Just live your life, easy peasy.
Now, I would still highly recommend active meditation sessions to complement this lifestyle and supercharge your mind to another level, but this is still a great place to start if you’re new to the game or if you’re looking for continual daily mind maintenance as an active meditator.
Check out our collections ranging from diffusers and essential oils for calming scents, Himalayan salt lamps filling your sight with a soft natural glow, and original stone bracelets to feel as reminders to continue moving in the right direction. Our collection is still growing, so keep an eye out as we explore new senses in the near future!
But it doesn’t have to stop there. Go outside for a walk through the park and you’ll see what I mean. Smell the roses, hear the wind brushing through the trees, look at the sky or clouds above you and really take it in and you’re already two steps ahead of the game.