Spring Wellness

An introduction to meditation

To celebrate the Spring season which has well and truly joined us for this year along with the successful release of our latest blend Spiritual Tea we wanted to share some further insight on meditation and its many benefits by experienced Vedic meditation practitioner Laura Poole.

Laura is the founder of Mahasoma, a feminine-led collective of Vedic meditation teachers based in Australia. Laura has been regularly practicing Vedic meditation for 15 years, and continues to develop her knowledge and experience by spending extensive time in India each year with her teachers. She has been sharing her learnings with students in Australia and around the world for over 11 years and was kind enough to share some of her wisdom, experience, and thoughts on the benefits of meditation with us below.




“Meditation is not just about feeling good for 20 minutes or so with your eyes closed, it’s about revealing the deeper truths of your own Self, letting go of the stress and confusion, and living a full incredible life.”

                                                                  Laura Poole – Mahasoma

What was the catalyst for you to begin practicing meditation in the first place and when did that begin for you?

It was ill physical and mental health that brought me to my knees and forced me to seek out other ways of living and being in the world. I was a teenager with the usual troubles of growing up while studying, partying, having boyfriends and navigating friendships. It began with my nervous system getting overloaded, which led to overwhelm, negative thinking, panic attacks, deep fatigue, digestive issues, and I ended up getting sick consistently. After a couple of years working with an incredible chiropractor and NET kineseologist, he suggested I try a meditation technique that everyone at his clinic practiced. At age 20 I went to a Vedic meditation intro talk and found myself just nodding the whole way through. It was like I was being seen, understood, and a very practical solution was also being offered. I was open to trying anything at that point, as I didn’t want to keep feeling so terrible in my mind-body. So, I learnt and it literally changed my life within 12 months.

Was there a particular aspect that drew you towards the vedic lineage over other forms of meditation? And is there any difference between different types of meditation?

Honestly, at the time I had no idea there were other meditation techniques. I thought meditation was meditation. You know, this is the time before iPhones, apps, and a yoga studio on every corner. Meditation wasn’t as popular as it is now and was seen as a more alternative and spiritual practice. I feel so blessed that Vedic meditation was the first practice I found. The reason I have continued with it for over 15 years has to do with the incredible flow of wisdom that comes from our Vedic tradition. This wisdom speaks to the deepest part of you. It sees you, honours the fullness of you, and then sheds light on ways of thinking, feeling, and acting in the world that allow you to be a magnificent force of nature.

There are different styles of meditation that use the mind and body in different ways to create different outcomes. Vedic meditation is an effortless transcending technique that works with the modern lifestyle. With so much thinking and doing, to then sit down to meditate and think and do more, you can see why people can avoid a daily practice! Whereas with Vedic meditation, the less you do the better. I sometimes call it ‘lazy-persons meditation’ because it’s about getting into a state of not-doing. It’s about relaxing deeply, allowing the mind and body to unwind, and making discoveries about who you are beneath all the turbulence of the thinking mind.

What have you found as some of the most beneficial aspects to implementing a regular practice for yourself personally?

This is a tough question as my entire life has changed for the better! I’m not angry anymore, I’m not anxious or overwhelmed, I have a deep connection to myself and the natural world, I want to help and serve those in need, and there’s just a feeling of happiness for no reason. Now, it’s not that life has become perfect and I don’t feel challenged anymore! But through my daily practice I’ve been able to cultivate one of the lesser known but most powerful benefits of meditation – self-awareness. Self-awareness is the foundation of life. It’s our perspective, our identity, the whole way we view ourselves, the world, and our role in the world. It’s like the anchor of a boat, or the roots of a tree that grounds us into the unseen aspect of life that is the source of all action. With greater self-awareness you feel more stable, grounded, and self-confident. You can witness what’s taking place in your mind-body, question things, and adapt or shift your perspective/action without getting caught up in the drama. So many of our problems come from not knowing who we truly are, having lost our roots. We get angry, scared, sad, or overwhelmed and those big feelings are like huge storms that roll through our life. Without the anchor of self-awareness, it can be a rough ride and take us a long time to recover! But with it, we can weather any storm, adapt to the need, and more easily come back to our centre once the storm has passed. This is the real definition of resilience.

You have been practicing and teaching for a long time now and I wonder if you notice common threads to why people are drawn to seek out meditation as a modality in the first instance? And are there any commonalities with their experience and feedback with how the practice has impacted their lives?

Definitely! Overall I feel people are seeking a better life experience – whatever ‘better’ means to them at the time. Some want to calm their minds and improve their mental health or recover from a physical condition, others want to relearn how to relax and enjoy life again, and many desire to develop intuition, creativity, and deep presence. I feel people intuitively know there’s more to life than sleeping, eating, working, and making sure everything stays afloat. We’re all seeking something to liberate us from the repetition of habit and the daily grind of our very unnatural modern capitalist world. You know, it’s common to turn to things like caffeine, alcohol, drugs, TV, social media, sex, or other forms of numbing/stimulation to escape. But meditation? That’s only just becoming more socially acceptable and commonplace as a way of dealing with stress, fatigue, and disconnection… at the root cause. Many people come to meditation, like I did, because of ill physical or mental health. They want to feel better, not be as anxious, and sleep at night. Simple right! And they achieve that… but what they also gain is a whole new way of living and being in the world. Their mind expands, their nervous system recalibrates, and they begin making contact with deeper aspects of themself. What meditation really gives you is liberation or true freedom so you can enjoy this magnificent life. Sometimes it’s our hardest moments or life challenges that end up being our greatest gifts. My teacher says, ‘you can thank your problems now, because it’s your problems that brought you here to meditation, and now you have the key to the whole universe that resides within you.’

I love the quotes and phrases that you often share on your website and socials and I find so many of the ancient Sanskrit philosophies and values that you share seem to be really transferrable to our modern life. Are there any aspects to the Vedic philosophy that you think are particularly relevant to where we are at as a modern society today? And are there any key learnings from this ancient time that you think we could all benefit from?

How much time do you have?! It is ALL still relevant because it’s all pertaining to consciousness, which is what we are, and consciousness is eternal. The greatest thing today we need to understand, experientially know, and embody, is that there is no separation between anything. All people, creatures of the Earth, all places, experiences, times, and spaces, are the same one consciousness playing and displaying itself as the diverse universe we reside in. You and I are no different at our essential Nature, and it’s actually our differences that create the magnificent texture of life. We don’t want a bland homogenous existence. We don’t want boring. We thrive with diversity, with colour, taste, perspectives, capabilities, and more. When more people come to directly experience this unity within our diversity, I believe we will come much closer to living peaceful, loving, healthy, and blissful lives. This is one of the many reasons why I meditate every day, and is the true purpose of meditation as the ancient seers practiced. This is said in many ways throughout the Vedic literature, but one that I love is ‘Aham Brahmasmi’ – I am Totality. I am Wholeness. There is nothing that is not my very own Self. Therefore, I respect life, I honour life, and I understand my purpose is here to serve all of life as Nature does.

Community seems to be a strong theme that is present in your teaching, can you explain what this means to you and what people can expect from the Mahasoma community?

When you learn to meditate with us, we offer a lifetime membership to support you in your daily practice. Learning a new skill is one thing, but continuing with it is another! That’s why we place a huge focus on like-minded community and connection. When I first learnt, I went to the on-going free weekly group meditation and Vedic wisdom sessions religiously. I’d get the bus home from Uni, jump in mum’s car, and drive straight to my teacher’s house every Monday night. They provided a stable check-in with my practice (I definitely needed refinement!), I met amazing humans who became dear friends, and it became a space for me to deepen and expand my practice/myself with transformative Vedic wisdom. Meditation is not just about feeling good for 20 mins or so with your eyes closed, it’s about revealing the deeper truths of your own Self, letting go of the stress and confusion, and living a full incredible life. It’s the continual support that helps people translate the experiences they’re having in meditation into powerful evolutionary change in daily life. It’s also much more fun to walk the path of this life with others on the same journey!

Would you like to learn Vedic meditation?

As a gesture of gratitude to our community and also as an endorsement of how valuable we personally find this practice, we are offering 3 people the chance to learn meditation and have half the course fee covered by us.

We offer to cover half the course fee to ensure there is not only a keen motivation to learn meditation but also to allow each participant ownership of their unique experience. The regular course fee is $880 but there are alternative options if financial stress is of concern.

To participate you must have a willingness to learn meditation and seeing Vedic meditation is taught in-person only, be able attend in person to one of the locations Mahasoma teaches from in Melbourne, Castlemaine, Noosa, Byron Bay, Sydney, Adelaide, and Albury.

To enter please simply complete the form below.

We would like to thank Laura for her time and sharing her thoughts with us here. For further information you can connect with Laura and the Mahasoma team at Mahasoma.

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