Social pressure can be a limiting factor when it comes to enjoying life to its fullest. In certain circles, even the slightest hint of debauchery is frowned upon to the highest degree. Sleep late, eat a candy bar, skip making your bed on the weekends, and wham, you’re destined to earn the negative title of ‘junk-food eating lazy slob.’ How fair is that? I would say it’s not fair at all!
Of course this meditation isn’t about doing whatever you want no matter the consequences, as it is always important to stay within the margins of what it means to be a kind, compassionate, and considerate human being. This practice is simply about giving yourself the space to enjoy what Buddhists call ‘the middle way.’ In other words, use it to savor the balance between work and play, exertion and rest, doing too much and not doing enough. Discover your personal middle ground, and let go of the influence others have over your life’s choices.
Begin in a comfortable position. Take several deep breaths to clear your mind and relax your body. Reflect on the image of a yin yang symbol. See its two swirling halves creating a perfect, balanced circle. Notice the line between the light and the dark. Notice how each side houses a little bit of its opposite in the form of another perfect circle. See this image as complete; neither lacking nor over full of the natural qualities that make up the universe.
Now, imagine your actions and inactions housed inside this symbol. For example, place concepts such as your habit of sleeping late on the weekends in one side, and your drive to overwork in the other side. What image presents itself to you? Is the yin yang lopsided? Determine where you are out of balance.
Next, in your mind’s eye, allow the yin yang image to expand. Make it larger than the universe. Create space in your life to fill the side that needs filling, or deplete the side that is too full. You are not bound to the confines of societies pressures; you have room to define what is best for you. Understand that in the natural world, there is both light and dark, yet the universe itself is a whole, complete, and perfect space. Embrace this concept and let the middle way bring you peace.