Last night I led a discussion on mediation (Christian meditation) with our senior catechism class. Although I have never had much success with mediation, our conversation led us to wonder if your over connected lives make it more difficult for us to disconnect. Meaning, that we are so connected to our iPhones, Facebook, and email that we are conditioning ourselves to no longer be able to empty ourselves.
"...the Christian purpose for this emptying is to be filled with the love of God... ultimately guided by God."
Rather than simply talking about mediation, seven of us attempted to mediate as part of an Advent Taizé worship service. We used a discursive meditation technique to reflect upon scripture from the prophet Isaiah. During our debrief, the time when many people would choose to journal about their experience, we talked about what we found distracting or how we felt successful during the time of meditation.
Personally, I had a very hard time focusing on the act of meditation itself. There was a Boy Scout meeting going on, with teenage boys running around and making noise. This proved to be, at least for me, a huge distraction. Another person in the group said it only took them 20 or 30 seconds to clear their mind. Once their mind was clear, they experienced an emptying they had never before felt. This prompted them to seek out meditation further, as a means of a spiritual practice
I really wonder if our over-connected lives are conditioning us to become unable to empty ourselves and truly allow the Holy Spirit to fill us. Personally, I will be making a concerted effort over the coming weeks to disconnect, and eliminate my dependency on the different forms of electronic communication that I allow to run my life. And while this disconnection is occurring I will attempt meditation again, with the hopes are developing it as a spiritual practice.