Meditation Journal Vol 2: Finding New York Meditation Centers
Hmm.. So much to talk about what happened since I last mentioned that I was going to visit New York meditation centers. I DID not know New York had many meditation centers, cheap to expensive to free.. from Eastern to Western-style.. Now it’s been months I forgot the whole journey, I’ll just mention the important things that stayed with me.
I went to a place called Shambala meditation center. I went to their Tuesday gatherings, with guided meditation and chat about different topics every week. I remember the teacher said, back then it was Christmas season, something like “thanks for coming, it’s a busy season, and for some, it’s far away from family.” I remember having tears on my eyes. She was warm, knowledgeable, she had a Ph.D., and after a little bit of chat about mindfulness or meditation focus, she leads a guided meditation. They in Shambala don’t close eyes, so you can ideally practice it anywhere! Obviously, you can be in the sacred place of yours, or just in the subway without looking like you’re meditating, you can practice your meditation.
I did go to a few other places in Chelsea.. (So many in Chelsea and Flatiron area) Most of them, it’s so crazy but, like a fast-forward, no hello, no greetings, just pay, get in, sit down, wait for the teacher who works by hour I guess, and they come exactly on time, 30 mins – 45 mins.. Then they leave! There was nothing warm like what I saw at Shambala where volunteers work and they do care to smile and talk. And the people who participate in this Chelsea meditation place, I was thinking it looks like instead of listening meditation apps on their phones, customers come in live, without the human interaction, sit, practice and leave. Interesting.
So I volunteered a few weeks at the Shambala center, it was a great experience. I felt like I’m helping to someone which brings my focus on who am I helping to? Most of us feel valuable because of our jobs and relationships, and that volunteering made me feel like I’m helpful and valuable to someone. But then like a month later, instead of going 2 hours earlier to help and volunteer, I decided to go on time and just pay for it! 🙂
I can’t believe when I was writing my Meditation Journal Vol 1, I was so innocent about meditation. Literally didn’t know anything! I am a very different person now, more content, more relaxed, more aware of my thoughts, feelings, others and I do not let my ego and conscious to involve with my reactions so much. It’s only a few visits to the Shambala Center and putting my intention to becoming someone aware and relaxed. (Also read some books and watched good YouTube channels and practiced yoga of course!)
If you’re looking to get into meditation, I suggest you check them out on Tuesday gatherings. They have amazing healthy snacks, fantastic speakers and topics.. tea.. and did I mention the snacks?! 🙂
My tips about starting meditation in New York:
Decide what is your intention? Why do you want to start meditation?
Make a list of meditation centers to check them out.
Be very open, and not expect anything specific from them initially, that way you’ll only gain things, and not be disappointed. (Don’t be that person who go write a long review about how they did something wrong. Relax.)
In the end, you’ll find one or two place you liked the most, regards to your intentions. Not because you liked the ambiance, or something else, but because it help you to get close to your goals.
Most of the meditation centers are like.. hmm.. how to say, religious. The core of them mostly same, but they all have a story behind it. Personally I care only the practical things that I can use, and I ignore the rest.. If you have a religion and believe in something, but then you go try a meditation and they start talking about their religion, I suggest just ignore that part. Don’t get panicked, or feel bad about it, or attack them or etc. Get whatever you want from that session, skip the rest.
Some people practice only one type of specific meditation, and it becomes their core belief, so respect them.
Some people use different methods and mix them up, and again respect their choices.
Be whoever you want, but be the person who’s kind and nice to others especially when it comes to connecting themselves, feeling calm and being more aware of the present moment. Don’t make it complicated.
Thankfully this is New York city baby! Very open and mix of everything and everyone.
Now it’s summer!!!! There will be a lot of outdoor workouts and yoga and meditations and bring them on!!!!
Should I make a list of free workout and yoga events??? Why not? (Well, if I’m going there I don’t want the event to be sold out, but since I love my gym and go there a lot, probably it’s okay to share the events with you! 🙂
Yea, please write in the comments below, if I get 3 comments saying you want to know the amazing free workout events, I’ll make my list. Hope you enjoyed my New York meditation tips 🙂
Lots of love,
P.S Yoga is all another story. I do yoga 1-2 times a week. LOVE IT!!!!!!!! We’ll talk about it in details in the next volume maybe 🙂
Free meditation center: https://www.nycmeditation.org/manhattan/
Shambala Center: https://ny.shambhala.org/