for Successful Meditation
Sit cross-legged on a pillow or meditation bench. If you choose this
style, adjust the pillow or bench so that your spine is straight and your head
is directly above your spine. When your butt is elevated just the right
amount, the spine will be straight, and you will be comfortable. At first
it may seem awkward, but, when you sit for a long time, you will quickly realize
the benefit. Move around until you find the right spot. If you begin
to feel strained, adjust your posture again until you are comfortable. If
your legs start to fall asleep, switch their position, and get comfortable
Sit cross-legged on a couch
or bed, putting a pillow under your butt to elevate it just a little. This
helps you keep the spine straight. Do not lean up against something unless
you can keep the spine straight. Sometimes, it is easier to keep your
spine straight when it is not touching anything, and, after your first few times
meditating, after you find the right spot to keep your spine straight, it will
be more comfortable, as well.
If none of these positions
work for you, you may meditate in whatever position you find yourself, but keep
the spine as straight as possible. A straight back facilitates the flow of
blood and energy to the body.
Then resume normal breathing.
If at any point, your mind starts to wander, bring it back to the breath, and
repeat a few deep slow breaths.
3. Don't try too hard.
Meditation is a natural
process, and whenever you find yourself trying too hard, just let go.
Meditation is a process of allowing yourself
to relax and let go of physical tension and emotional trauma of the moment.
3. Consciously put
aside your thoughts of work, relationships, emotional upset and physical trauma.
A good way to do this is to
see your thoughts and ego as an actual person, sort of a neurotic and nagging
person. I think of this person as my lower self. Tell this person
gently and lovingly that you are going to put them in time-out for the moment,
that, as much as you appreciate them, you choose not to listen to them or be
ruled by them at this time, and that you will let them out later.
Visualize yourself placing
all your judgments, thoughts and burdens in a closet or on a shelf. You
are just storing them, for the moment, and you can pick them up later.
4. Consciously let
energy move in your body.
Starting with your toes,
visualize a beautiful golden light, and experience it as a tingly sensation. ( I
like to picture it as a golden sparkler.) Move this sparkly energy up the
body, allowing the light to remain in areas of pain or tightness, until they
release. Bring the light through the calves, knees, thighs, pelvis,
stomach, chest, up the spine to the base of the neck.. Feel everything relax, as
the energy moves upward. Visualize it moving up through your
fingers, palm, wrist, arm, elbow, across the shoulders to the neck. Then
allow the light to move up the neck into the face, the chin, the mouth, the jaw,
the nose and sinus cavity. Feel yourself breathe easier. Relax the
eyes, the eyebrows the forehead, and feel the entire brain fill with light.
Then bring the light out the top of your head in a big swoosh of energy, and
allow the light to move down the outside of your body, like a golden fountain.
Allow the light to flow back in the bottom of your feet, enveloping you in a
golden cocoon of light. You are safe and protected, and now direct the
energy back through the body and out the head, and again, and again, until you
feel the energy moving through your body, and your body relaxes. (This
visualization may also be done starting with the head and moving out through the
5. Consciously let go
of your thoughts of the day, of work, of relationships, of verbal and physical
interactions with others. This is your time for yourself.
Focus your attention on your
breath and on the symbol, sound, music, or light that you have chosen.
Whenever you feel your thoughts gaining power, visualize your thoughts as fish
in the ocean. Let them come up for air, recognize them, and then let them
go back under. ("I had an argument with John today. Back to the
breath. I am hungry. Back to the breath.") Direct your mind
back to the breath, back to the symbol, sound or light. Let your mind be
aware of what is going on around you, but not be a part of this activity.
"Back to the breath."
When your thoughts are trying
to take over, tell yourself, "Back to the breath". When you hear a sound
(TV, basketball, people talking, music), notice it and then gently and firmly
tell yourself, "Back to the breath."
See your breath as people
walking through the gateway of your nose. There are all types of people.
One time they may be in ancient dress, one time in modern. Don't focus on
individual people, but focus on the flow through the gate. It is like you
are an eagle perched on the top of the gate, not interested in any individual
but in the parade.
6. People experience
meditation in many different ways. Sometimes it is easy. Sometimes
it is an effort for even the most experienced meditator.
Acknowledge how you are
feeling, and let it be a part of your meditation. Sometimes your thoughts
may be so continuous that you cannot let them go completely. Let your
meditation be an exercise in letting go of each individual thought, even if that
thought comes back in the next minute.
Do not judge whether your
meditation was good or bad. You will find that just the effort to meditate
even for five minutes, even when your mind is especially active, provides a
moment of calm. Some days you will be able to go deeper. You may see
lights or people or get answers to problems. The next day you may just be
meditating on conversations from your day, and you may not be able to go deep
into meditation. That is all right. All meditation is good. It
is all a release and a relaxation, even if it is only for a moment.
After meditation, most people
feel that their mind has been cleared and that they have a sense of peace, but
sometimes your meditations may actually intensify whatever issues you are
working with. Don't judge it; just go with it, whatever the sensation.
Many times you may feel that you received solutions to a problem in meditation.
Other times you may just feel good, and still other times you may feel like no
You will find your
meditations getting longer and deeper with time Just allow yourself
to start out meditating five or ten minutes, and, if you just persevere, you
will find yourself meditating longer with little or no effort. In fact,
you find yourself looking so forward to your meditation time that you can hardly
Often, people who are
experienced meditators experience light surrounding them. They may even
feel like they are leaving their bodies for a moment. They may hear voices
or see a specific scene in their mind. These are things that come with
practice, and even if you never experience heightened awareness or visions,
meditation still brings you a calm peace of mind that is, of itself, well worth
Good luck with your
meditation. May it bring you as much joy as it has brought me!
We are all one!
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