Lately I have been learning the art of meditation for extended periods of time in solitude. We sometimes refer to our mind-body programs as a fertility meditation – but I think of the study of meditation as more an umbrella term for any exercise when we quiet our mind for a certain uninterrupted period of time. Our mind-body programs can be classified as meditation, I suppose, but it is much more directed to help you visualize and think in a certain fashion for optimum health and well-being. What I have been trying is to simply quiet my mind on my own…harder than it sounds!
For the past few years I have been reading and studying Ekhart Tolle’s philosophy about staying in the present moment and using meditation as a catalyst to strengthen this “muscle” to stay rooted all day. It’s powerful, and can be life-changing.
In his book, Power of Now, he gives instructions about how to meditate and become closer to the underlying energy behind everyone and everything. Rather than try to summarize his philosophy – which would be redundant since his books are readily available, I thought I would share what I learned from him on meditating.
In summary, here are the steps I take to meditate:
1. In solitude, find a comfortable sitting position and close my eyes. I like to face a window and feel the sun on my face;
2. Take three deep breaths, while focusing on the inhale and exhale, imaging the flow of positive energy into my body;
3. Visualize a circular mesh or screen that passes through my body and catches anything that shouldn’t be there – whether the beginnings of illness, errant cell development, excess stress;
4. Keep my attention focused on my body and feel the subtle flow of energy, also known as Qi (pronounced “chee”), throughout my entire being. Just sensing it and feeling it without judgment or wanting to change it;
5. Moving deeper with my awareness into my body to the quiet place inside that I feel is the provider of this energy. If you are religious or spiritual, then it might be helpful to think of God, or a universal power behind everything. I try to then fell the presence and that it fills my being. I try to sit with this sense or feeling for as long as possible – but the longest has only been a few short minutes, which will hopefully lengthen as I work to strengthen my ability to stay focused.
What happens as a result? A glimpse and honest true feeling of what is behind my soul. I feel an incredible sense of deep peace that stays with me after I open my eyes and bring my awareness to the moment. It doesn’t happen all the time, but I truly feel blessed when it does.
Feeling and sensing this energy while I meditate allows me to stay rooted in the present moment throughout the rest of the day. If I feel anger, impatience, or just a negative or melancholy feeling, I bring my attention back into my body and find my peace again. I have been also finding that answers to problems arise much more fluently.
Do you meditate? Will you share your regimen and how you go about it?