Embodied Life™ Newsletter Archive

All articles written by Russell Delman

I'ts Alive

August 31, 2022

I don't like the word meditation which can be a problem because I like to teach meditation. My difficulty is that the word implies something like "mind control" and/or not having thoughts. This belief sets people up for disappointment and failure. In natural functioning, brains create thoughts, the heart beats and the stomach secretes acid - all natural, all good, except when out of balance.

True meditation is learning to be with and take care of the present moment. Every moment includes the inter-weaving of:

Self - sensations/thoughts/feelings


World - whatever is arising outside one's physical body.

Learning to be present includes learning how to relate to our habits of "absencing" We all have these habits; they are not obstacles. Rather, they are a significant part of awakening to the reality of our life. Becoming the best friend of "what is" whatever it is, even all those undesirable moments in a curious and dedicated way, IS meditation.

Meditation is practice for living everyday life. It is not separate from the rest of our lives. Learning to live is a combination being PRESENT in the moment AND wholeheartedly investigating the moments of absence.

Meditation is learning to be ALIVE.

I love this famous Zen dialogue (Koan):

Someone asked the Chinese Zen teacher Zhaozhou, "What is meditation?"

Zhaozhou replied, "Meditation is not meditation."

The student was puzzled. "Why is meditation not meditation?"

Zhaozhou replied, "It's alive! It's alive!"


means turning

curious attention


the living moment


unconditional forgiveness



for our life-denying habits

this is true during meditation


in the rest of our lives as well

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