You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Sun, Jun 12, 2011 : 8 a.m.

With all of summer's distractions, will you still meditate?

By Susan Scott Morales, MSW


Susan Scott Morales | Contributor

Now that the weather has become warmer and the plants outside are growing with all the recent rain, I’m tempted to leap out of bed and into my garden. After all, gardening is meditative, right?

Some of you may have other changes in your schedule coming up — your kids home for the summer or travel plans or a cottage up north that needs your attention. Will you leave meditation behind?

I have to make plans to keep my meditation practice active. For one, I resist the temptation to jump into the garden first thing in the morning, reminding myself it will still be there when I’m done. Sometimes my meditations even give me solutions for a problem I’m working on in the yard.

What if the kids are home, though, and you can’t get a moment’s peace? My first suggestion is to get up earlier than the rest of the family, go outside and meditate there. If that isn’t feasible, how about meditating with the children?

When my 4-year-old grandson awakes, he is at his sweetest, most cooperative self. One morning after he had spent the night, he ran into my room and found me meditating. I invited him up onto my lap.

As he snuggled into me, I enjoyed the smell of his hair, the warmth of his little arms. Yes, it was a shorter meditation than usual, but very satisfying.

If you’re traveling, I suggest you pack a pillow or shawl that you normally use to meditate. It’s easy to forget when you’re out of your usual routine. It helps to set the intention ahead of time, and I find that my shawl is a gentle reminder. (It also helps when the A/C is too high!)

For me, meditation is like a best friend I don’t want to leave out of my summer plans.

Susan Scott Morales is a meditation teacher, psychotherapist, published poet, novelist, and community contributor to Tweet her @susanscottmoral, reach her at or visit her website: or fan page:


Dog Guy

Mon, Jun 13, 2011 : 6:16 p.m.

Meditate? On what?


Mon, Jun 13, 2011 : 4:29 p.m.

I appreciate this devotion to the act of meditation. Many of the readers may think that meditation is the cultural practice of the East. But, it would be useful to know the difference in the concept and practice of meditation as promoted in this post and as recommended in the East. Indian tradition recognizes four kinds of mental activities and mental functions; 1. the seat of thoughts, 2. the seat of emotions like love, kindness, friendship, and compassion, 3. the seat of intellect and knowledge, and 4. the seat of ego or self-pride. To keep the mind still, we need to suspend these four mental activities and functions. These mental functions and activities cause turbulence and man cannot perceive truth as truth. Meditation is a practice to suspend and to disengage from mental activities and functions. If you recognize the presence of a child in your lap, it indicates your mental engagement and mental activity and hence you are not "meditating."