Mindfulness and meditation

BASTA club helps students relax and re-energize

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In high school, dealing with the constant worries of grades, classes and homework can be stressful. However, Angelica Shirley, a Spanish teacher at WSHS, helps students work through these problems with the practice of meditation.

BASTA, which stands for Being Awake in Stillness equals Total Awareness, is a meeting place that teaches how to relax through guided meditation. 

“It’s an opportunity for students to have space and be able to learn how to be okay in silence and stillness and not have to worry about what happened or will happen,” Shirley said. 

Shirley wants to share the practice of meditation so students are able to relax and relieve stress and worries. 

“I believe that all human beings need time and be able to be comfortable and just be with oneself without the noise without anything else,” Shirley said.

Jasmine Meekins (10) participates in BASTA to help clear her mind and learn self-control through meditation practices. 

“It’s a really nice way to relax and release tension after a stressful day or week,” Meekins said.

In BASTA, students are guided through meditation by guided lessons. Students can participate by following the lessons in silence. 

“You recenter yourself and refocus on the right priorities,” Blake Shirley (10) said.

Angelica Shirley was inspired to start BASTA from her own experience with meditation.

“A lot of things can be avoided at their age with meditation so they can be healthier at a much earlier age,” Shirley said. 

BASTA has improved some lives of students by learning from meditational skills. 

“Just by being there, it helps remove all thoughts from your mind,” Blake Shirley said. 

Shirley believes the practice could help others in order to experience a calmer life.

“Every decade brings something new that forces you to look at yourself so you know how you’re developing, because there’s always growth,” Shirley said. 

Shirley is glad to see how BASTA has enhanced many student’s skills in general. 

“Just because you’re alone doesn’t mean you’re lonely,” Shirley said. “It’s okay and is needed to be alone to calm yourself from everyday motions.”

Meditation has shown just how powerful it can be by practicing for a few minutes once in a while. 

“It’s good to be able to be there and know you can just be and don’t constantly have to be doing other things,” Meekins said.