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Grandfather's Mediation

My grandfather was a quiet man who kept mostly to himself. He was born in White Russia but his parents moved to the United States when he was an infant. He was an athlete, a middleweight boxer, an accomplished bicycle racer, and a businessman.

I grew up in his house and sat by him after supper on his couch while the other members of my family scattered to do their thing. He had a ritual where he would quietly sit smoking his pipe of black cherry tobacco without saying a word for twenty minutes, and I still can almost taste, in my mind, its robust cherry flavor and aroma.

I now know this was my grandfather's style of meditation, a habit he did without failing his entire life. When he was through smoking he gave me his undivided attention. There was nothing I couldn't ask him and he listened carefully to every word. After he listened to me, he would give me advice about anything from how to soften my baseball mitt to how to do long division.

He was always present and I learned that it was a good idea to get your mind clear before you tackle your day. I don't recommend smoking so form your own rituals or use a tested form of meditation. My grandfather lived to be 97 he was as sharp to the day he died as when I snuggled next to him when I was five.

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