The alt-right is full of exhortations to self improvement. Lift weights! Do martial arts! Study science and math! But what of meditation?
Meditation is clearly beneficial to anyone attempting to survive among the ruins and improve themselves. Take a gander at this article named “This Is Your Brain On Meditation” from Stanford University:
Your brain tunes out the outer world during meditation, and on brain scans of meditators, scientists can see increased activity in default mode network – which is associated with better memory, goal setting, and self-awareness.
You want to rise up and turn the tide of Western decay. If you’re going to do that, you will need to put your mind in order and develop self-control, discipline and mental clarity. You have to focus. Rather than put together a reading list of books that none of you will buy, I’ve condensed everything that you need in order to get started into a nifty list. Pay attention and notice every word. Here’s how it works:
- Find a comfortable position in which you cannot fall asleep. As you progress in your practice, you will sit for longer and longer periods. Don’t bother getting the position perfect at the beginning, just comfortable enough to sit for ten minutes at the start. You will fidget and shift around at first. Trial and error are a big part of meditation, so you’ll need to refine your position as you go. Don’t bother doing full-lotus, unless you are already very flexible and like the position. Websearch “zafu” and “kneeling bench” to see some other options. Sitting in a chair works, but sit up straight so your chair doesn’t touch the back. This is about focus, paying attention, and noticing things.
- Begin with ten minutes and gradually increase your time. Figure out how long you can meditate and sit for five minutes longer than that. As soon as you notice that you’re comfortable, bump it up another five. Keep doing this until you’re up to an hour every day. This may take anywhere from a few months to a few years. You will notice it getting easier as time passes.
- Pick a focal point. You can concentrate on the feeling of breath in your nose, your chest rising and falling, the area just below your navel, the way your palms feel, or any other thing. Pick one and stick with it. You can count your breaths up to 10 repeatedly if you like. Different things work for different people. Experiment around for a few sessions until you notice that one method works. Stick with that method. You may have to change approaches, but err on the side of staying the course rather than the side of trying new things when the decision between the two is difficult. If you’re 50/50 on whether or not to change how you meditate, don’t.
- Learn to control your mind. This is the important part. You don’t progress from sitting in a thoughtless state for hours on end. Not when you first start. Maybe after that you’ll sit in a thoughtless state. Until then, focus on repeatedly bringing your mind back to the focal point. You don’t win when you focus successfully for an hour. You win when you bring your mind back to the focal point after it wanders. Just focusing doesn’t score you any points. You DO score a point whenever your mind wanders and you bring it back. Points are permanent and never go away. You can always rack up more. Keep bringing your mind back to the focal point and get a point for it. The more points you score, the easier it gets to score more points. Don’t overdo it. Don’t self-flagellate. Just keep bringing your mind back to the focal point. Keep racking up points.
- Bring it into everyday life. As you meditate, you will notice something. You will notice that your meditative state happens by itself. You will be driving or taking a walk, and BAM! You’re in a meditative state out of nowhere. This is a good sign. When this happens, start doing it on purpose. When your attention drifts while you’re cooking breakfast, bring your mind back to the present. The more you do it, the easier it gets. It is like a rusty switch where the rust falls off as you use it. Every time you meditate spontaneously, focus on prolonging that state. Once you reach this stage, you can rack up points in everyday life.
- Get your moral trip in order. You are gaining willpower. It is becoming one of your definitive traits. Use it to drop bad habits. As you score points, you become stronger. You get stronger every day. Use the willpower to score points, to increase the willpower even more, to score even more points. You will develop more focus, continually grow in strength. Keep bringing your mind back to the focal point. Get rid of your bad habits and you will find that you become even stronger. Strength becomes simply a part of your personality. You are getting better and getting better means being stronger, which makes it easier to get even better, which makes it easier to get even stronger. Let go of the things that make you weak. Willpower is now a definitive trait of yours.
- Lead. Many people will fail at this. If you are reading this site, there is a chance that you are part of the natural aristocracy. If you want to find out whether you can really make the cut, follow the instructions laid out here. Brett often speaks of putting the best people in charge. The only way that happens is when the best people put themselves in charge. If you are one of the best, then put yourself in charge. Follow these instructions and you will see. Keep bringing your mind back to the focal point. You will find that you are getting stronger.