a session of meditation undertaken while walking while being aware of the component parts of the steps and aimed toward calming the mind and reaching insight as to the nature of mind
Our body loves movement, and will reward us with joy when we pay attention to how it feels
How to do a Walking Meditation
There is a great and deep richness of experience to be aware of the present moment as you walk. Most of the day we are caught up in our thoughts and in our heads, thinking of the past and the future, planning what lies ahead, imagining how things are going to be etc. Paying attention to the body, on other hand, as you walk will keep you focused on the present moment and all you to enjoy simply being in the here and now. The advantage of walking meditation, as opposed to a sitting meditation, is that it is easier to stay focused in the moment when the body is in motion.
Anytime you can set aside at least 20 minutes. Try not to multi-task it with anything else like going somewhere specific, or walking for exercise. This should be a walk just for meditation only so that you can drop into the experience with complete focus.
Before you begin your meditation walk, you should spend some time still standing in one place. Just allow your focus to be own your body. Breathe deeply inhaling into the belly. Put your focus and awareness on the mechanics of your breathing. Allow your breath to return it’s normal pace and notice it going on its own for a little while. Next bring your attention to your body, and begin to notice how your body feels as you are standing, and become aware of all the sensations going on in your body.
Walk at a relaxed slow but natural pace. Be aware the sensations in your body as you are walking. It is normal to have your attention being drawn to the sights and sounds around you as you walk, but try to keep refocusing your attention to what is going on with your body.
The main purpose is to have your awareness on the actual physical experience of the walking. If your mind begins getting caught up in thoughts, you can simply bring your awareness back to the present moment and the experience of walking. Pay attention to how the body feels in close detail as you walk. Your entire body is involved in the act of walking from your feet to your head.
Be aware of how the soles of your feet feel. The direct contact they make with your socks or shoes. The textures of the material touching them.
The way the feet feelas the weight of your body weigh of them and the sensations in them as you walk along.
Take notice of the feet, being aware of how it moves as the heel is placed on the ground.
And then the movement rolls to the ball of the foot and toes.
Be aware how it feels as the foot lifts and moves forward.
Move your focus to move up through every part of the body.
Notice the sensations as you walk.
Begin to slowly scan all parts of your body as you bring your focus to the ankles, skins, calves, knees, thighs, hips, pelvis, back, chest, shoulders, arms, neck, head.
If you become aware of tension or stress in the body, try to let it go.
Give permission to that part of your body to relax.
Allow all of your body to relax.
Let your hips swing loose. When you do this, the walking will become more pleasurable.
Remember the most important thing is to keep you attention on the sensations in your body, simply bringing it back when your mind has wandered.