The New Blue and Silver Ash Dragon benches are a hit. Or, as they would say in New Zealand, they are a 'bomb'; meaning a great success.
When sitting in meditation your cross leg or kneeling posture is paramount to experiencing a good 'sit'. If your body is not comfortable and in easy, natural alignment then it is almost impossible for your thinking mind to come to a still and stable place. Not that there is anything wrong with a mind darting here, there and everywhere in thought and sensation, along with dropping in to visit the past or sliding off into the future. It is awareness of what your mind is doing that is the beginning of 'waking up' to the nature of your mind and its many habits.
I remember a meditation teacher decades ago telling a group of meditators that when sitting in meditation it is the fluids of the body that hold us up. At the time I thought that was absurd. 'Surely it is our muscles and bones that hold us upright' my inner commentator told me. However, within a short time and with ongoing practice I did come to experience a light-weight body state that astounded me in its effortless. This body state freed my mind to become spacious and as light as a feather and even more importantly enabled me to simply become present to each moment. Present to each in and out breath, present to the simplicity of beingness, which is starkly contrasted to sitting and trying to be something, or not be something.
A workable analogy of the fluids holding the body up is to think of a hose, an ordinary garden hose. You turn on the tap and water begins flowing down the inside of the hose. If that water flow is increased and becomes stronger and stronger the water moving through the hose will begin to move the hose. It will snake back and forth, it will seem to have a life of its own. It is just like that. When there is just the right amount of not trying, a felt-sense of being in suspension in the chi within and around your body, and a mental letting go of having to sit in a perfect posture, then, and only then will you more likely experience the earth and air holding you, supporting you and touching your skin ever so sweetly. Wishing you many hours of happy sitting!
Karen M. Bell taught yoga and meditation for decades in Australia, Bali and Nepal. As a former somatic therapist and Buddhist psychotherapist she brings body awareness, psychological training and practice in the wisdom traditions of meditation and mindfulness to her writing.
She is the directors of Black Dragon Seats and Somatics Australia.
Her personal blog is www.wellandhappy.com.au.