Most people don’t try meditation because they think it’s a waste of time, they don’t have the attention span, or they think it’s goofy.
Meditation has a reputation as something bored middle aged women do to pass the time. In reality, meditation is one of the best things you can do for yourself.
I want to dispel the negative reputation meditation has by showing 3 badasses in fiction who use meditation to their advantage.
The first time I saw Ninja Scroll I was blown away. The animation is incredible, the violence is off the charts, and the story is pretty good.
The antagonist of the story is a guy named Himuro Gemma. Gemma has the ability to control every single cell in his body with his mind. This grants him the ability to change the structure of his body at will.
He doesn’t age, he can shape shift into looking like someone else, can reattach severed limbs, and is the pinnacle of human athleticism.
It’s not specifically mentioned how he came upon these powers, but there’s one scene at the end of the movie where you see Gemma sitting by himself on his ship meditating in the dark. His ship is on fire and explodes.
He’s completely unfazed except for opening his eyes.
I was always fascinated by this. This ultra violent nihilist hones his abilities by quieting his mind and meditating to such a degree that he learns complete control over his body.
Gemma goes into battle armed only with a large metal gauntlet. He doesn’t need weapons because he can reattach limbs, and he prefers to beat his opponents to death with his bare hands.
When Darth Vader first comes on the big screen he’s portrayed as a complete heel asshole working for the Empire.
Once you get into Empire Strikes Back, they started giving the character a little nuance. There’s a scene in Empire that always struck a chord with me.
Some lieutenant for the Empire has to report news to Vader and ends up having to disrupt him in his quarters. He’s visibly shook because Vader is such an intimidating dude who won’t think twice about force choking you to death.
Vader is in a capsule with his mask off and you see that Vader is actually a man underneath the whole outfit. His body is badly burned and has scars all over it.
The lieutenant only gets a glimpse of Vader without his mask on but it’s enough to show that the character has had some kind of traumatic event in the past. The scene leaves you wondering what exactly Vader was doing in this chamber.
Turns out that Vader meditates regularly.
There’s another scene later in the movie that shows Vader in his chamber again. He’s sitting there meditating when all of a sudden the screen in his room comes on and some flunkies give him some bad news. He immediately force chokes one to death and puts the other one in charge.
It’s never really touched upon beyond these scenes. I like to think that he meditates to control the force better and to heal his broken down body.
Daredevil was hit in the face with strange chemicals as a boy which blinded him. It also amped up the rest of his senses so that he could “see” by hearing things.
Daredevil, whose real name was Matt Murdock, was taught as a kid to overcome his limitations and to live an exceptional life.
His teacher was another blind man named Stick who taught him to focus using meditation. Through meditation he could filter out the overbearing world and be able to hear what he wanted. He also used meditation to speed up healing.
This would come in handy as a vigilante because Murdock was constantly being beat up. Despite being an expert in martial arts and having the upper hand in most fights, the odds were not always in his favor.
Using meditation to heal broken bones and lacerations proved extremely useful. When you’re constantly getting in fist fights, it pays to have some type of healing abilities.
Daredevil doesn’t have any superpowers besides being able to hear extremely well. Meditation is a convenient way to explain how he isn’t sitting around recovering all the time. Although his use of meditation is a bit exaggerated, it does have some basis in reality.
Daredevil also uses meditation to cope with his extremely chaotic life. Matt Murdock is a trial lawyer by day and vigilante by night. He’s constantly dating models and having to worry about them being in danger. How does someone juggle all of this without going a little nuts?
They meditate to keep calm.
Hopefully I’ve done a good job of showing that it’s not just middle aged vegan mothers who are into meditation. There’s actually some practical uses you would want to integrate into your daily routine.
If it’s good enough for a bad dude like Darth Vader to do, perhaps you won’t feel as weird when you are sitting alone in your room breathing for a half hour.
Start meditating for at least 5 minutes a day and work your way up. I’m certain you’ll see great results.