Want to become a better meditator, fast? Then this FREE teaching by Tutteji Wachtmeister Dai Osho, award-winning spiritual teacher and contemplative entrepreneur extraordinaire, is for you. Learn how to boost your meditation performance & make your spiritual practice work for you. While geared to beginning meditators, these are meditation hacks that even seasoned roshis, tulkus, rinpoches, ajaahns and other guru-types should remind themselves of once in a while.
Don’t Be an Idiot
Probably the number one mistake beginning meditators make is that they buy into whatever bullshit is offered by some dude with a Sanskrit name or a fancy robe. It’s essential that you realize that most meditation teachers are losers who couldn’t make it in the real world, so they joined a cult with low enough standards that they could rise through the ranks. When you’re just starting out on the spiritual path, you want to meditate as effectively as you possibly can, and that means staying away from such losers and hucksters. They’re only in this game to get your adoration and your money, and possibly your ass. If you find your meditation teacher can’t deliver, you need to get rid of him and find a better one. Once you committ to a meditation teacher, it’s absoultely essential that you treat him or her with respect, however. Don’t be arrogant, be smart!
Don’t Be an Idiot (2)
Stay away from the mindfulness business, at least until you’ve gained enough self- confidence and experience to start your own MBSR outfit. Although the market is oversaturated and extremely competitive, it’s certainly possible to make a respectable cut, but as a beginner it is extremely important that you realize the following: MINDFULNESS DOESN’T WORK. Don’t believe the hype, realize that those scientific studies proving that mindfulness is good for ya is mostly bullshit, payed for and carried out by the same hucksters that sell the crap.
Don’t Confuse Misery for Spirituality
When you meditate, you shouldn’t do it to escape from being depressed or having a really bad day. Even more important: don’t ever, EVER, imagine that it’s OK to feel miserable on the spiritual path. Forget all the bullshit you’ve heard about “The dark night”, and such. This myth was invented by depressive neurotics and losers. Meditation practice is all about realizing Winner’s Mind, and it’s a path of blissful success. If you’re not feeling strong and confident, you’re not meditating properly.
Don’t Stay in a Sangha Just Because You’re Already In It
Another common mistake beginners make is to think that “Well, I’ve already invested so much, I have to stay with this teacher and this sangha.” Nope. You can’t get enlightened, or even make your meditation practice profitable, this way. The time and money you’ve already invested in a sub-standard sangha isn’t yours anymore, and you can’t get it back just by sticking around.
Don’t Try To Do This On Your Own
On the other hand, don’t fool yourself into believing you can become a successful meditator on your own. Sure, there have been a few geniuses around who managed this, but don’t be an arrogant idiot and think you’re one of them. As I’ve said before: Choosing a spiritual path is likely one of the most important decisions of your entire life, and you need a fully transmitted Teacher if you want to do it right.
Don’t Look For a Serious Relationship in Your Sangha
I’ve been a spiritual teacher for quite a few years now, and I can’t tell you how many times I sat across the meditation hall & watched a student waste his precious time on some hopeless love interest. Now, I’ve been that person too. And there’s nothing wrong with dating another Sangha member. Let’s be realistic here: most of the time it’s more fun getting laid than meditating. The important thing is to keep it really, really casual, in a ham-bam-thank-you-ma’am kind of way. The sad truth is, most female meditators are terribly neurotic and anemic vegetarians. While getting off with one of them might be relaxing and enjoyable, you will likely also find it difficult to get rid of her.
There are exceptions, of course, and before someone calls me a sexist, you should know that I’ve personally trained a number of smart, beauiful and successful female meditators.
Don’t Bluff Just For Bluffing’s Sake
A lot of beginners understand that bluffing is a part of spirituality, but not exactly how. Now, this is not entirely wrong – bluffing is an important part of spiritual mastery, and skillful bluffing is what makes a genuine spiritual teacher. But it is important to understand that bluffs only work in certain situations and against certain people. It is essential that you know when and how to bluff. So be careful when you talk about your enlightenment experiences or the famous teachers you’ve studied with or received initiations from. Never use a Pali or Sanskrit or Tibetan word unless you know its meaning and how to pronounce it properly. Don’t make a fool of yourself and remember, it’s better never to bluff than to bluff just to bluff. In fact, some of the best spiritual bluffers I’ve met never talked abut their accomplishments. This way they managed to impress everyone with their humility.
Do Pay Attention to Meditators Around You
On the other hand, you want to move forward, and a smooth spiritual career normally demands some skillful bluffing as well as brown-nosing. Don’t overdo it, though, as this will (rightly) be interpreted as a sign of weakness. Always be mindful of what’s expected of you, and try to outdo your seniors. Never forget that the ambitious students are all fighting for the Master’s attention, so you need to monitor your competitors very closely. The most important thing, however, is that you choose a Sangha which offers Rapid Upward Spiritual Mobility (RUSM). If, after working closely with a spiritual Master for a couple of years, s/he hasn’t hinted that it’s time for you to get transmitted, this is a clear indication that something is wrong, and it’s probably time to move on.
Do Pick the Right Sangha and Plan Your Career Wisely
There is a famous line from a sutra that goes like this: “A man’s got to know his limitations”. Be modest, but keep your high aspiration. This is especially important if you’re considering a career as a meditation teacher. Spend some time investigating your options before committing to a specific teacher and Sangha. Take a good, hard look at yourself and make a fair assessment of your own assets and try to find a good match. And be realistic: unless you’re exceptionally pretty or wealthy or famous, you won’t get much attention from your meditation teacher. But if you’re committed to your spiritual career, he will soon notice that you stand out, and after a few years you should be ready to hang out your shingle. Remember, though, the words of Zen Master Dogen: “There is no end to practice and realization”. As a new meditation teacher, you won’t be invited to the Wisdom 2.0 conference or make the cover of the Buddhist glossies — or even asked do a podcast for Buddhist Geeks. But don’t be discouraged! Soon enough, you’ll be interviewed by Ted Meissner or Adam Tebbe. Don’t frown at these venues! Also, remember that in today’s dynamic spiritual marketplace even things that were considered a hindrance just a few years ago (facial tattoos, a drug habit, an unusual ethnicity or sexual preference) can become valuable assets for the aspiring meditation teacher if you make them an integral part of your teaching and marketing strategy.