Author Topic: How comfortable should I be meditating with legs crossed and back straight?  (Read 814 times)

juntjoo

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When I do this I find myself struggling with breathing in the position and the position itself. With my back straight my breath is shallow as it elongates my abdomen preventing it from fully relaxing. How deep should it be? And I have to force especially my lower back straight the whole time too. How comfortable should I be? I'm getting better at it but I'm concerned my difficulty is getting in the way of the point of meditation.

Quardamon

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In my opinion, you should sit comfortably. That is also what the basic instructions on this website say.
Of course, you can do physical exercise and stretching to be able to sit more comfortably. But for the meditation, sitting in a chair is better that straining on a cushion.

juntjoo

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I hanks. I see your point. At the same time I also kinda see the point of the full lotus position for meditation. I guess there are different aspects to it and you gotta exercise/be aware of all of them. Idk. But I do feel a sort of foundation for a higher state being established in the position. It just sucks it hurts. I'm actually getting better at it but especially the first few minutes my mind is distracted by the force required to maintain the position and also just the mental frustration. Then once my right leg falls asleep lol at about 15-20 min I then change to kneeling position where my back arch is way more comfortable and belly relaxed for a fuller inhalation... but I don't have the full lotus with my legs which I'm guessing is optimal energy balance, like feng shut.  Well, with practice it should get easier but lord do I feel far away at this point. Perhaps I can have the state of mind that my practice will be more physical in the beginning transitioning to more mental/spiritual as I progress.

Laurent

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Hello,

I have personally noticed that posture improves by itself, when quality of meditation increases.
If you focus on posture, it generally becomes an additional problem that prevents from concentrating on the real practise which is mind training.
The best is to set up a correct posture and forget it, focusing on the practise itself. If there are issues like a leg falling asleep, it is reasonable to move, but not giving much importance to this issue. And some times you will notice that you don't especially want to move although there are issues, because you are not worrying.
With time, posture tends to improve and issues will appear less and less.
I don't really know how it works, maybe an attentive mind knows how to place the body the best way, maybe body has its own wisdom when mind stops hanging on. But it is a fact.
You can practice on a chair, it has the same results as practising on the floor, but i feel that when sitting on a chair, it is more difficult to release legs because they tend to contract, but maybe is it personal to me.
This said, it would be easier to help if we know what you exactly practice as a meditation.

Metta.

juntjoo

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What exactly? I don't know what to call it but I try to sit with my back straight, towards "lotus" position as I can't do it entirely, tho I'm pretty flexible, and I try to clear my mind. Sometimes I mix in some mindful thinking, but always with the ultimate goal of reaching a state of non human lol, or heaven. Idk, just trying my best to cope with being human. As far as techniques, I don't usually stick to one thing as much as I gather common fundamentals and just to incorporate them into new habits.

You say hey your posture established then forget about. That will be tough if I'm trying for a particular difficult posture. But you're saying it's not that important. I'm still under the impression that the lotus positioning is the best for meditation. But I do like the reasoning that it doesn't matter (so) much. Anyway, I try to meditate whatever position I am in anyway. But I guess if there are times when I just want to exercise just my mind then I'll choose an easy posture. I'll just keep practicing. Thanks for your response.

Matthew

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If you did not spend your childhood in India living and eating sitting crossed legged then really it may not be worth the effort.
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juntjoo

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If you did not spend your childhood in India living and eating sitting crossed legged then really it may not be worth the effort.

Lol good point. If and when I have children I've got new ideas how to raise them. 'dad, why do we have to eat unlike any other kid in the neighborhood?' 'it's just too hard to explain, but one day, many many days from now you'll thank me'

Laurent

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What exactly? I don't know what to call it but I try to sit with my back straight, towards "lotus" position as I can't do it entirely, tho I'm pretty flexible, and I try to clear my mind. Sometimes I mix in some mindful thinking, but always with the ultimate goal of reaching a state of non human lol, or heaven. Idk, just trying my best to cope with being human. As far as techniques, I don't usually stick to one thing as much as I gather common fundamentals and just to incorporate them into new habits.

You say hey your posture established then forget about. That will be tough if I'm trying for a particular difficult posture. But you're saying it's not that important. I'm still under the impression that the lotus positioning is the best for meditation. But I do like the reasoning that it doesn't matter (so) much. Anyway, I try to meditate whatever position I am in anyway. But I guess if there are times when I just want to exercise just my mind then I'll choose an easy posture. I'll just keep practicing. Thanks for your response.

What i said is ok if you practice with bodily sensations, in other cases, i can't certificate that it works the same way.