“Have you ever found yourself running around doing things while you breath quickly and your heart beats too fast?
If left to your own natural pace what would your breathing be like, your pulse be like, operating in your own rhythm? Discovering this rhythm gives a certain feeling of freedom to know ourselves.” Ewan Bonham
Today I am speaking with Ewan Bonham who, along with Starlight will be hosting a weekly Transcendent Activation class Sundays at 3 pm slt beginning March 19, 2017. Ewan is sharing the experience of Mindful Meditation with SL residents to help them find that freedom.
Seersha Heart: For those who may not know, what is meditation?
Ewan Bonham: Meditation is a practice of concentrated focus upon a sound object visualization, the breath, movement or attention itself… in order to increase awareness of the present moment. It is used to reduce stress, promote relaxation and enhance personal and spiritual growth.
One source of stress is our mind jumping around to things it has no control over: the past, the future. We have a habit of thinking about these issues continually, but we find peace as we live our moments in the present.
When we focus on the present moment we feel a sense of peace and can enjoy the sensations of that moment. This leads to each of these moments being a richer experience.
Seersha Heart: One of the other techniques you will be discussing is “Mindfulness” meditation. How would you describe that activity?
Ewan Bonham: Simply sit in stillness allowing whatever thoughts you have come to your mind. You acknowledge them and sense their flow but you give them no energy. You do not pursue the thoughts, letting them float in and out. As you let go of these thoughts you gain an ability to stay in the present.
You create a detachment from distracting thoughts to gain insight and awareness of self.
Seersha Heart: Your class is called Transcendent Activation. What do you mean when you use this term?
Ewan Bonham: Transcendence means beyond the body, also beyond our strict time table and beyond the physical. Transcendence is a reduction of our awareness of our physical bodies and a letting go of our emphasis on time. Your body and your mind can regulate itself.
Seersha Heart: What made you think of SL as a good place for your class?
Ewan Bonham: SL is very convenient to use. You just need a laptop and to construct your own personal Ashram. Our meeting as a group while using the simple tools in SL, gives you the freedom to construct your method and space to take time out of your RL day. When we meet as a group we will go through many of the different tools that help to create an ambiance. The end product will be to build you own private space for focused meditation.
Seersha Heart: You are saying your group will be making their own meditation area using the tools in SL?
Ewan Bonham: We begin by showing a simple platform. I want each person to find a place, where nobody else knows you are around, your own corner of the world for this ashram to be used.
Some of the SL tools we will use in building our ambiance are lighting, textures, our cameras and scenes. Other tools include the use of words, affirmations, music and sounds. Some find it useful to use a moving object for focus [moving art]. These are all basic building tools to use to make your ashram.
After discussing the ashram I will talk the group through a meditative experience. The breath is the anchor of meditation, if you concentrate on how your breath sounds and feels it is much easier to stay in the present.
Seersha Heart: People attending the class will meet other residents. What are the social and interactive elements of your group?
Ewan Bonham: We will practice meditation and follow it up with a group discussion. Members can share what the experience was like for them. Perhaps something that has popped up for them. Some people have memories or feelings they haven’t had in years. Once released, they become more available to the present.
Discovering and sharing with group members in our natural state has a comforting feeling.
We will also be traveling to some of the many SIMs that are designed creatively and beautifully. They have been created with meditative spots in mind.
Seersha Heart: You will be meeting in a dedicated skybox for meditation. Will you describe it for us?
Ewan Bonham: It is represented in the picture. This is a quiet and private space where we can flexibly present many of the elements discussed above. Group members can determine what feels right for each of them.
Seersha Heart: Should people interested in your class bring anything with them to class?
Ewan Bonham: Just themselves and their own open minds and hearts.
Community Cultural Hub
SURL: WBH Community Cultural Hub, Inspiration Island (87, 118, 22) – Moderate