Meditation cannot flourish without proper concentration. The role of concentration is indispensable. A meditator is a gardener. The gardener’s task is two-fold: to cultivate beautiful, fragrant flowers and plants in an aesthetically pleasing composition; and to keep the garden free of weeds. To enter into the spiritual heart and enjoy the limitless peace, love, beauty and joy of our heart-garden is surely the goal of meditation; yet we cannot perceive the good qualities of the garden if the mind’s thought- and worry-weeds are allowed to proliferate. Weeds strangle, smother and climb all over the more delicate and beautiful plants, just as our mental doubts and fears obliterate our heart’s peace, sympathy and sweetness.

Effective concentration is to meditation, as weeding is to the garden, eliminating mental activity which disrupts the flow of our meditation and blights the beauty of our heart-garden. A perfect garden has not a single weed: a perfect meditation entertains not a single thought. But thoughts, like weeds, do not disappear of their own accord: they require constant work and vigilance to remove and to proactively prevent their further encroachment.

Gardeners will tell you that weeding is their most important and time-consuming task. Everything else comes from just loving the garden. Without an effective weeding program, the garden is doomed. Never underestimate the importance and power of concentration. If your concentration is diligent, sincere and intense, your meditation will take care of itself and flourish as a beautiful, powerful, adorable, fragrant garden.


You cannot eat with paper chopsticks. They do not have the strength to grip anything, let alone carry it to your mouth. To do their job, chopsticks must be firm. Only a concentrated mind can grip and control its own thoughts, enabling us to enter into meditation.