"So I found myself sitting, on various retreats and at home. At home I would sit for maybe half an hour or an hour a day, sometimes longer. I would go on retreats and sit for much, much longer periods of time. And very often my meditation was actually anything but meditation. It was a lot of struggle, a lot of trying to calm my mind, a lot of trying to control my thoughts, and a lot of trying to be still, without much success except for a few magical moments when meditation just seemed to happen. Because I wasn't particularly gifted at meditation initially at being able to control my mind and enter into a meditative state after some years I realized that I needed to find a different way to meditate. The approach I was using clearly wasn't working. This is when I began my investigation into what I call True Meditation.
"One day I was speaking with my teacher, and she said, 'If you try to win the war with your mind, you'll be at war forever.' That really struck me. At that moment I realized I had been viewing meditation as a battle with my mind. I was trying to control my mind, to pacify my mind, to try to get my mind to be quiet. Suddenly I thought, 'My goodness, forever is an awfully long time. I must come up with a whole different way of looking at this.' If continuing this way meant I was going to be at war with my mind indefinitely, I needed to find a way not to be at war with my mind. Without even knowing it I started to investigate, in a quiet and very deep way, what it would be like not to be at war with my own mind, with what I felt, with my whole human experience.
"I started to meditate in a different way. I let go of the idea of what meditation was supposed to be. My mind had had a lot of ideas about meditation. It was supposed to be peaceful; I was supposed to feel a particular way, mostly calm. Meditation was supposed to lead me into some deep state of being. But because I could not master the technique of meditation as it was being taught to me, I had to discover a different way of meditating, one that wasn't oriented around a technique. So I would sit down and let my experience simply be, in a very deep way. I started to let go of trying to control my experience. That became the beginning of discovering for myself what True Meditation is. From that point on, that shift moving from trying to perfect a technique or discipline to actually letting go of technique and discipline started to inform the way I engage in meditation."