What Waterfall Meditation Teaches You

Resilience in the face of unpredictability

Before you do waterfall meditation, you have no idea what it is like. You have no idea whether you will be able to do it well, or whether you will not even last a few seconds. In other words, it is an unpredictable challenge.

Of course there are predictable parts to it. You know it will be cold, you know the water will hit hard. However, you don’t know just how tough it is until you’re under the water yourself.

That’s why it’s such a good tester of your resilience, of your ability to persevere through the hard times, and of your ability to focus in the face of what can be the most physically and mentally tough part of Yamabushi training.

Not only does it prove you have what it takes to get through waterfall meditation, it proves that you have developed at least some techniques at getting through the unpredictable.

We use any number of techniques to get through waterfall meditation. A good one is chanting the heart sutra, but another good one is, ironically enough, experience.

If you have experience getting through tough and unpredictable times, when you meet tough and unpredictable times, you will be better prepared. You will have the confidence to know, in spite of the unpredictability, that you do have what it takes to get through.

It can seem difficult in the moment, but difficult and impossible are two different things.



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Sakata City, Yamagata, Japan 


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