Living in Maine, we are blessed with the ocean as home. This August we had an opportunity to create a silent meditation sail on a two masted schooner. The gliding, quiet movement was nourishing and calming; the water element- a basis to generate greater compassion. Enjoy this guided ocean meditation that you can adapt – even for floating in your bathtub.

The meditation is a series of contemplations to cultivate mindfulness and to generate Bodhicitta. Take time with each contemplation (paragraph) from a few minutes to twenty. Up to you.

Cultivating Mindfulness:  Open your senses, relax your senses. There is the warmth, the air, the wood underneath us, water under the wood. Smell the ocean, taste it in the air.

Notice the sensation of movement, the boat is moving and at the same time the ocean is rocking us. Floating and moving in/with water are new and old. Gliding and floating feel new. Yet primal, we floated for 9 months in water. Allow the sensation of this moving and sailing to be realized/experienced… not thought with more thoughts.

Who is moving/flowing: Our bodies are water (60%) our hearts are pumping and we have the solidity of earthlike flesh and bones. Land under the surface is lava, steam, shifting plates. We are flowing, boat is floating, we are floating, land is flowing clouds are floating. Time is floating, life is flowing. Ocean…Land…I… We…. Time… Life….Flowing… Floating.

At home in this moment let thoughts flow away.

Giving rise to bodhicitta-(loving kindness and compassion) Expand heart mind into this moment of life. The sunlit waters of our ocean support even more living beings than on land, about a million microscopic organisms are in every single drop. Fish, crabs, mussels, eels, lobsters, seals, whales, sharks below; birds above. Connect wholeheartedly with the water beings, our companions with whom we share life in this very moment.

Give rise to bodhicitta (loving kindness and compassion) overflowing from your heart to all life, all living beings.

With the ground of Bodhicitta supporting your heart/mind, Expand, without thought. Be ocean/life. Profound presence and vastness, nowness, complete as it is.

Dedication: Gather some water in your hands. Let your thoughts turn to wherever you hear the cries of suffering and bless this water with prayers that it becomes healing medicine. Whisper aspirations to benefit all beings with this practice. Offer the water to the ocean, or to any body of water near you. Know that over time it rises as a cloud, becomes a rain of nectar; nourishing the land, quenching the thirst of the suffering, taken into the bodies of the wise to sustain their long life and teaching.

The End

Survey for people who have attended VDN retreats.


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