5 surprising reasons you should meditate with your animals

So you’ve bought your meditation cushion and chosen your favorite meditation position. You’ve contemplated and picked your mantra or visualization. You’ve found a quiet time of day to practice. You’re ready to start meditating, right?

Maybe not. What if you were missing the most important piece that could improve your practice quickly and easily? I’m talking about animals, and why it’s so important you invite your animals to sit with you while you meditate.

It may sound strange at first, but consider these five reasons why you should be meditating with your animals every day:

1. Animals are mindfulness masters. They teach us about embracing the present moment and living in gratitude.

2. Animals realize that joy and silliness is a big part of mindfulness. Sometimes we humans take our spiritual journey a bit too seriously!

3. Animals remind us to live simply and focus on the things that really matter in life: love, kindness and peace. Wouldn’t it be nice to let go of all our material concerns for just a little while each day?

4. Animals help us to open our hearts and share compassion. They do this effortlessly, just by their presence. They model unconditional love. The best meditation is always done with an open heart.

5. Animals have much quieter minds than we do. They don’t torture themselves with anger about yesterday or worries about tomorrow. They don’t constantly multitask. Be honest: Are you multitasking right now as you read this article? The most successful meditation happens when we bring all of our awareness to the here and now.

It’s really quite easy: Simply invite your animals into the room where you will practice, and set your intent to share all of the energy you create through your practice with your animals.

Often we think the main benefit of meditating is to de-stress and quiet our minds, but an even deeper benefit is to access our inner well of compassion.

The first time you meditate with your animals, they may look at you a bit strangely, wondering what is going on. Hang in there with your practice, and you will see that as your energy shifts into a calm and balanced space, theirs will become more peaceful, too. Even active dogs will begin to calm down and want to sit with you! Even better, because of their wonderful presence, I bet you’ll find it easier to focus on this present moment, to sit still for a longer period of time and to open your heart to the practice.

Often we think the main benefit of meditating is to de-stress and quiet our minds, but an even deeper benefit is to access our inner well of compassion. This deep space of heart consciousness is something we can draw upon in our daily life to help us get through those “not so peaceful” moments we may find ourselves in.

Just imagine if your meditation practice could blossom into a time not only for de-stressing yourself and your animals, but also for sharing compassion with others more easily in all areas of your life. All of this and more, just by meditating with your animals. Pretty wonderful, isn’t it?

How have animals helped your meditation practice?

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Kathleen Prasad is an entrepreneur, author, educator, spiritual seeker and animal advocate living in beautiful Marin County, California, with her husband, daughter, dog and two horses. She loves being with animals, listening to hip-hop, eating out at vegan restaurants, riding dressage, hiking in the redwoods and traveling the world to meet animal people.

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