If you grew up in the seventies and the eighties, like I have, then I’m sure you must have seen more than your fair share of movies about wise, old kung fu gurus who meditated on mountains and became all the wiser for it. Seems simple, doesn’t it? Simple go to a mountain, sit on it, meditate, think of nothing all day long. Then come back, and voila… you’re wiser and much, much better at kung fu than you were when you first left! Well, it doesn’t quite work like that in real life. You’ve got to be common sensical (is that a word? if not, then it is now!) enough to be able to separate movies from real life.
But as it turns out… there is a core of truth in these movies. Because meditation really can help you become a much better person. And you don’t necessarily need to be sitting on your butt in order to perform it. There is a little thing called ‘walking meditation’, which is (as I’m sure the smartest ones of you out there have already guessed) meditating while you are walking. Either that, or walking while you are meditating. It completely depends on how you look at it, ofcourse. But enough rambling. Let’s dive into the details for a bit.
It’s going to get better still. Not only do you have to be walking around the block in order to perform your meditation, you can also combine it with one of the greatest sports known to man… hiking! Don’t you just love the very idea of taking it to the mountain and then literally taking a hike? Imagine being surrounded by nature, getting completely refreshed by mother nature’s mountain air and then also meditating while you are at it? It’s a truly magical formula.This is why they call it a mountain retreat. You just go and f#ck off into nature and come back completely refreshed and spiritually enriched, assuming you believe in such things.
And if you don’t believe in it, that’s fine too. See, I don’t believe in the human soul either. But it doesn’t matter. Just so long as you understand what I’m talking about. Meditation has nothing religious about it. It’s just all about letting go of your thoughts and becoming in touch with your inner self. It’s a sort of a reconnecting. You can get disconnected because of all the stuff that magazines, the TV, radio and other kinds of multimedia throw at you on a daily basis.
How To Get Started With Meditative Hiking
I understand if I’ve gotten you completely worked up and enthusiastic about hitting the mountains and getting some well deserved rest and relaxation. But before you run off to the nearest by mountain top, stop and think for a second. You can’t just hop on over to a mountain top the same way that you can hop on over to the super market. They call it a mountain retreat for a reason. Unless you’re living right at the foot of a mountain and already have all the gear you need, then you’re going to have to make some preparations before you can go. And even then it’s probably going to take you many hours of driving in order to get to the nearest by mountain. So once you arrive, you really need to be taking your sweet time for your walking meditation mountain retreat.
So next to an enormous amount of patience, you will also require a lot of hiking gear to take with you. You should never underestimate the amount of stuff you need before taking to the mountains. I learned that from the Boot Bomb website that I’ve been visiting recently. There’s a treasure of information on that website and I would not want to miss out on it for the world. I sure am glad I found it. I especially liked the one page about hiking boots. Brian from the Boot Bomb especially emphasyzes the importance of really good boots for hiking journeys. The longer your walking meditations are going to be, the better footwear you will require in order to make it all throughout your meditative hike.
Some people suffer from a nasty case of plantar fasciitis, also referred to as heel spur. This is a terrible condition where you have horrible pains at the bottom of your foot, and especially your heels. It’s because of the plantar fascia tendon that tends to thicken and become less flexible in some people. It can lead to aggravating, even incapacitating pains. This is a serious condition that you need to prevent at all costs. And if you already have it, you need to treat it well, or else it will get worse and you’ll be a long way from home. The condition is often heriditary. But being overweight, standing for long periods at a time, and wearing inadequate footwear can easily help in triggering a nasty case of heel spur. And it can make existing conditions worse. For that reason, if you are suffering from this, you will need to buy the best hiking shoewear for an inflamed plantar fascia you can find. It’s a one time expense and you will prevent a lot of misery with it. Good shoewear is easily the best investment you’ll ever make.
But once you’ve made all the preparations, you’re ready to go and transform your life on top of a mountain. Many people have done it before you. Take Waylon, for example. He has been meditating all his life, because he was raised and trained as a buddhist. But he also likes hiking, which is no surprise considering the fact that he was born & raised in Boulder, Colorado. Waylon likes a lot of things by the looks of it. But his first and second loves in life are meditation and hiking. A fantastic combination, if you don’t mind me saying so.
You don’t necessarily need to start off with meditation by heading straight into the mountains. You can get started more easily by simply doing sitting meditation first. And then you could move on to walking meditation. The latter is not a whole lot harder than the former.