Meditation sessions offers calm, insight in hectic times

February 2, 2016  |  by Bonifas Arts Center

Those interested in learning about meditation can attend two free sessions of “Intro to Insight Meditation” Feb. 7 and 14 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. at the Bonifas Arts Center.

Anyone can benefit from meditation, from atheists to spiritual seekers, said Gene Schlueter, instructor. Each session will include discussion, instruction, and meditation.

“Insight Meditation” refers to practices that develop calm through sustained attention, and insight through reflection, moving from anxiety, fear, and stress by finding their source and then re-perceiving to find new ways of handling situations, said Schlueter. It also lowers blood pressure, he said.

Many people “bury” or ignore uncomfortable feelings, which “doesn’t work,” said Schlueter, who has been practicing meditation for about 45 years. “It just keeps popping up,” whereas if people can focus on the uncomfortable, “this brings it to light and puts it to rest permanently,” he said.

Though this form of meditation comes from the tradition of Theravada Buddhism, it isn’t in conflict with Christianity or any religion, said Schlueter, whose father was a Lutheran minister, and those who are religious can find meditation “a spiritual undertaking” similar to prayer because “Traditional prayer is a meditation.”

Insight meditation often leads to “compassion as well as forgiveness,” said Schlueter. “Through meditation, you can find a place of peace and harmony and joy within yourself and then bring that out into your reality.”

Those who’ve never tried meditation are welcome, and those who have tried different forms of meditation may find this type beneficial even if others were not, said Schlueter.

Attendees can participate sitting in chairs or on the floor, whatever is most comfortable, and can bring pillows or blankets if they feel these will be needed to comfortably participate, said Schlueter.

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