Barcelona is an industrious little city. If you are living or staying in the center of the Gothic Quarter, El Born, El Raval, Poble Sec or Gracia – you will know that it is almost impossible to escape the constant buzz of noise. Taxis, refuse trucks, shutters opening, people laughing, couples fighting, children screaming, dogs barking, shutters closing, people digging up the road – it can seem overwhelming.
So what better way to counter the constant noise, the relentless rushing about to and from tourist attractions, language classes, drinks with friends, intercambios, this and that, than with a moment or two of zen.
Meditation has been proven to not only promote stillness and a better quality of life, but it has been linked with other health benefits such as lowered blood pressure, cessation of illness, improved mood, weightloss, a sunnier outlook, better digestion, and it has been shown to have an impact on our relationships.
Meditation is easy. You just need to try to quiet your mind. Don’t focus on quieting your mind eg thinking nothing, just focus on trying to quiet your mind. Not thinking is very difficult in a world where we are constantly overwhelmed by texts, emails, Whatsapp messages, phone calls, tweets, Facebook updates etc – and that’s even before we get up in the morning.
If you are not sure how to begin or prefer to meditate in a group format, then Barcelona has lots to offer.
In Sarria, there are cheap group meditation classes every Thursday at 9pm with classes at just 3 euros each and lasting for 75 minutes.
If you’re in Sants, then Centre Zen Barcelona welcomes you to its zen practice and a calendar of calming activities throughout the year.
More centrally, DojoZenBarcelona on Ronda Universitat near Placa Catalunya offer many activities such as zen meditation, workshops and talks.
Just because we are in a capital city there is no reason to neglect our inner calm. In fact, the busier our lives and our surroundings, the more important it is to attend to our state of mind and to find moments of calm throughout our lives.