The Posture of Meditation …and More


While meditating, have you ever wondered “am I doing this right?” Am I “not too tight; not too loose?” “Am I torturing myself to sit upright and perfectly still?” Over Remembrance Day weekend Will Johnson delighted a group of seasoned and relatively new meditators by leading a program entitled “The Posture of Meditation.” Focusing on the key principles of alignment, relaxation and resilience and their interdependency, Will challenged us to “embody” our practice by bringing attention to the sometimes subtle movements which are ever present in our living bodies–even in stillness.

Heather commented on the weekend, “Thank you for having the insight to give meditation practitioners the opportunity to actually practice “relaxing” while sitting. It will be part of how I continue to practice and work with meditation instruction from now on.” Will stressed the importance of alignment in allowing relaxation and the importance of resilience in supporting the continuation of relaxation. By encouraging us to feel the sensations of our experience of touch, sight and sound, many of us were able to actually free ourselves from overly stiff and restricted sitting postures. We took this experience into walking outdoors on the land. Will also generously worked with individuals on their specific postural concerns.

“Will Johnson is an amazing teacher and equally amazing is the subject matter he has developed concerning the posture of meditation. Will’s approach is totally different than any other meditation technique I have seen, yet supports all of those techniques. Becoming aware of body sensations and introducing subtle movement, during meditation, not only benefits the body but helps calm the mind,” commented Wade after the weekend.

Another participant, David, described his experience this way. “Having spent far too much time in meditation halls where people torture themselves, I came to hear Will because of the keywords alignment and relaxation. He added so much more; an experiential description of what we label “not too tight, not too loose” he spoke of as an “amoeba-like pulsation” and the head on the shoulders is floating like a fisherman’s cork. Stillness is not holding against, but results from allowing the breath to move the body. Our practice became a dynamic experience rather than a struggle to hold either a static posture or conform to some kind of static concept of what we should be doing. Thank you, Will.”

Marilyn further commented, “I think he (Will) struck just the right balance of conceptual and experiential – his talks were warm and relaxed, the outdoor walks were wonderful and the noble silence forced us to keep it real, in our bodies and not in our heads, and not to dissipate the energy with habitual chatter. My two big takeaways were – allowing the body to move naturally with the breath – and – working with sight/sound/sensation triad.”

(Will) ”has such a beautiful energy that it was a great “treat” to be around him; even more to benefit from his teachings and his wisdom,” said Carmen. George added, “Will’s insights are based on his personal experiences and studies which he generously shares with clarity and compassion. This is one of those programs that will have a real, long term impact on my practice.” We have already extended an invitation to Will to return to Dorje Denma Ling in 2011. Mark your calendar and don’t miss this opportunity to enjoy truly “embodied” practice!