Walking alone has always provided me with the time to mindfully quiet my thinking. Early morning is my favorite time to walk. The traffic sounds are at a minimum, the waking birds are at their most vocal.
I begin by just being aware of the environment. I notice the color of the sky, the mood the trees set, the way the air touches my skin and certainly, the sounds.
I always take deep breaths as I start out. Big, steady strides- not necessarily fast, but steady. Then, when I feel like I'm in sync, I begin to consciously turn my mind off.
I concentrate on my breathing. I inhale for two or three steps then I exhale for the next. If thoughts come to mind I discourage them leading to solo conversation. I just ignore myself.
Before I know it I am engrossed in doing nothing but moving and I am as relaxed as if I were in my sitting meditation position. The pace matches the rhythm of my breathing. My pulse is slow and steady.
I thoroughly enjoy nothingness. Often my spirit will divulge important messages to me as if by osmosis; they just occur to me completely. Not as a thought; I am not thinking, but as a fact, a feeling, a sense. a sensation.
From these messages I may decide upon a few words to use repetitively. Invariably this phrase touches exactly upon what my spirit and soul know I need to address. I continue on until I know it is time to return.
Walking meditation has long been practiced by people who are both physically and spiritually enlightened. The two practices go together naturally. Each provides the time and space to connect with your soul. Silent or with music, anything goes.
~from Maat's Book of Shadows