“If the heart wanders or is distracted, bring it back to the point quite gently and replace it tenderly in its Master’s presence. And even if you did nothing during the whole of your hour but bring your heart back and place it again in Our Lord’s presence, though it went away every time you brought it back, your hour would be very well employed.”
~ Saint Francis de Sales
The mind does not like to meditate; it wants to wander. When someone is not doing very well in meditation, one explanation is simple: his or her mind is elsewhere. The early stages of meditation are like a primary school for the mind. At first we are simply trying to get the mind to stay on the school grounds until the last bell rings. This is all we can do at first. The mind has been playing truant for years; when we try to concentrate, it simply is not present. All we can do is stand at the doorstep and whistle, trying to call it back in.
Even if all we do in thirty minutes of meditation is to call the mind back thirty times, we have made great progress. We don’t have to wait for the day when the mind is completely still to receive immense benefits from meditation. As the Bhagavad Gita says, even a little of this discipline protects us from great dangers.
~ Eknath Easwaran