Author: Oleg Cherne
Sometimes, wine immerses you in a state of quiet contemplation, while sometimes it throws you into a tempest of emotions. Wine culture is so diverse and offers such broad opportunities that it’s no wonder such terms as «mystery of taste,» «wine meditation,» and others have appeared. The term «wine meditation» is as vague as it is difficult to define. However, throughout the ages, people have attached different meaning to its usage.
The modern use of the word is traditionally associated with Indian teachings, although it originally derives from the Latin «meditatio,» which means «to ponder» or «to plan.» In Catholicism, it signifies the short, silent pause in a liturgy when the congregation prays. Oriental doctrines interpret it in yet a different way and associate it with complete silence. Thus for hundreds of years, the essence of meditation has posed a mystery to man…
Wine meditation is a process combining such notions as quality wine, the art of drinking, and a person’s personal ability to perceive and experience flavor. Wine meditation is a conversation with oneself; it is a unique mindset where you unite the power of wine and the power of your conscience. It is that moment of supreme clarity when you are filled with a divine nectar while still preserving a clarity of mind and concentration (as a requirement of a conscious experience).
Meditation remains a secret to us mostly because in order to comprehend this term, one must experience it first-hand. It is a timeless state, and only one who has achieved it can speak about it with any authority. Everything else so-called «experts» might offer you is no more than a group of psychological tricks that in reality have no bearing on actual meditation. To try meditation, your mind must first be properly prepared.
Since meditation is a timeless phenomenon, naturally, no culture can claim a monopoly on it. You can achieve it through Dao or Buddhist techniques, by studying the theory of mechanics, or by tasting wine. Meditation by itself is not a technique but a state of mind, an experience that requires the proper flow of energy in your body and well-developed focus. Indeed, wouldn’t we all benefit from a little more of this? These qualities are worth nurturing in everyday life. If you are ready and willing to try, you can meditate pretty much anywhere: at a concert, in church, even at you dinner table.
In this timeless state, one can comprehend the ecstasy of our being. It consists of multiple levels and can manifest itself in strong emotions, euphoria, and the contemplation and realization of your true nature. You will start to approach the secret of why you were brought into this world.
Keep in mind that meditation is a healthy experience, unlike being «high» or unconscious. It is also so much more than sitting still with your eyes closed in an air of superiority. It is about becoming one with the essence of your true self.
Time stops for a moment, and you get a chance to better understand the nature of the world. It is true knowledge that will help you reevaluate yourself and whatever is around you. We all know we live in three dimensions, but few can perceive them to the fullest. People who can meditate attain a fuller grasp of the space where their accumulated power can manifest itself. You must draw from this well of power if you want to learn meditation.
The ability to meditate also suggests strong willpower. Or more precisely, we might call it intellectual strength. Intellectual strength is when your body nurtures your mind, just as food nurtures your body. The union of energy, body, and mind is essential in learning meditation. When they are connected, the ability to create flourishes.
Once you have the need and power to create, can there be anything better? Then, where exactly you channel this is up to you. Meditation is diverse and true. However, to attain it, one needs to overcome the dictatorship of the Ego. You need discipline, rhythm, and willpower. It won’t just come of its own volition, you have to work hard to develop it.
Wine for Wine Meditation
For wine meditation, you need a wine filled with poetry, power, and the frequency of the place where it was made. In it, you must feel the imprint of the winemakers, its own hermitic experience in the caves of Bacchus. You cannot use an industrial, mass-produced wine.
It must be at least five years old, with enough inner power accumulated to curb its alcohol content and reveal its true character. Most often, it will be a signature wine with an individual portrait. A sommelier can help you find your way in this kingdom of experience. Most importantly, it must be a wine with a history.
Consuming Wine for Meditation
You cannot simply drink wine when you meditate. You must savor it. Remove everything unnecessary from the table. There should just be a bottle of wine, a glass, a cheese plate, and some good bread. Perhaps a Borges book. Or you can read Hegel or enjoy Gauguin or Leonardo da Vinci, but the key is the balance of place and activity.
Be mindful of all parts of your surroundings: place, colors, activity… Make sure everything is focused on the wine. And it does not matter who is at the table with you, just let the wine do its thing. Do not allow anything to distract you from its flavor.
Once you lose the flavor, you lose your focus, and with it—your conscience. Remember that meditation is not about losing but finding yourself. As the great astronomer Domenico Navara said, it is not enough to know the position of the planets, you need to know what poetry they carry. The biggest danger is to lose connection with the process. Losing the thread is the same as indifference.