Meditation for the Love of It

reviewed by Kristine Morris

Enjoying Your Own Deepest Experience

by Sally Kempton

Sally Kempton describes her teaching as the “fusion of loving and knowing,” or “devotional contemplative Tantra,” and says, “It is what inspires me to meditate. It recognizes the world and ourselves as a tapestry woven of one single divine energy. It is devotional because it cultivates a loving attentiveness to ourselves and the world. It is contemplative because it

asks us to turn into and take rest in the interior spaciousness where we know the self as pure transcendent awareness.”

A fundamental promise of Tantra, according to Kempton, is that a skillful practitioner can use anything — any moment, feeling, event, or experience — as a way to unite with the divine. Tantra teaches how to harness and channel all of our energies, even the disagreeable ones, and use them to this end.

Suggesting that most of the important techniques of meditation and yoga probably began as someone’s spontaneous experience, Kenyon encourages honoring your own meditation experiences by recording them in a journal, returning to them, and building your own practice upon them.

“We usually think of meditation as a practice or a process, yet meditation is also a relationship,” she writes. Kenyon describes her practice as an encounter with the “Beloved,” spoken of by the Sufi saints, and shares how intense feelings, like a “pressure in the heart,” pull her powerfully to rendezvous with the Beloved.

There is a wealth of information available about the how’s and why’s of meditation, but this guide to learning from one’s own deepest experience is a treasure unlike any other. This is the book on meditation that your heart wants you to read.

Sally Kempton has been practicing and teaching since the early 1970s and is a former swami in one of the Saraswati orders of India. She is a master teacher of meditation, subtle energy, and Tantric wisdom, whose students include leading teachers of yoga and meditation around the world. Kempton currently teaches at the Kripalu Yoga Center and Esalen. She leads retreats internationally and writes for Yoga Journal.


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