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Suggestions On How To Meditate Part 1

Aug 17, 2007
When we first beginning to meditate, there are many habits that we fall into that prevent us from achieving a peaceful, state to make any real progress. There are habits of worry, restlessness, judging ourselves or our practice of meditation, excessive movement which can become distracting, overeating, overindulging in smoking or drinking, complaining, and finding fault. There also are certain habits that we can do to assist our mind to get into a place of meditation, and to begin to make some progress in your practice. Here are some hints:

Consistency of Time: It is better to meditate at the same time every day. It is also usually easier to meditate early in the morning because the Earth is more still, your mind is quieter and the day-to-day activities have not started yet. But if you can't do it early in the morning, be consistence with the time that you meditate during your day, and do this every day if you are able.

Consistency of Place: It is also beneficial to have the same place, so that your mind can make recognition of familiar things that are around and begin to feel secure there. The mind is like a small child that needs routine. Chose a certain corner of a room or room of your house that you will consider your meditation space. If you cannot leave out your props each day, collect them and then with each time you can display and use them in that space once again. Consistency of time and place assists the mind with that feeling of safety and security.

Familiar Props: Having the same things that you use consistently helps greatly in your meditation process. Again it is a sense of trust, safety and familiar that aids the mind to become quiet. A suggestion of some props includes your choice of prayer cloth, which can be draped over your person. Drape cloth for an alter that you set up. An alter, or table that will have all of your meditation items on it, a bell or chime, or Tibetan bowls to announce the beginning and end of your meditation, prayer beads or mala beads, inspirational books, or prayer books, candle or small light, incense, a mediation pillow, mat, or roll, special pictures of landscapes or saints or spiritual leaders, or special items like a feather, or blessed materials, shells, small stones etc, small tickless alarm clock.

Creating a Routine of Actions: In creating habits for meditation, a routine says to your mind that it is time to meditate and get quiet. The routine might include, first a preparation of purification. This could include a bath, or simply washing your face and your hands with cool water, and then patting your face dry prior to starting your meditation. Next an acknowledgement to your higher self, or god, is appropriate. You could do this by putting your hands together in prayer position over your heart, which indicates you are centering your heart, and opening your heart, then lift your hands to your forehead, to acknowledge your third eye or center of perception, and then bring your hands back down to touch your heart. It is an indication that you are coming back to your center and that is where you will begin your meditation. It is also an intention of purification of heart and mind. After purifying yourself physically and mentally, you might chose to light an incense, set out your props, and light a candle. You could ring a chime or a bell and let the sound resonate in your ears and through your body. If you enjoy meditation with music it is appropriate to turn on your music softly prior to your beginning. Next you may begin your breathing to center your mind, and cover yourself with your prayer shawl or blanket.

Meditation is the stillness of the mind and a reconnection with your inner spirit. It could be a time of reflection, and a period of question and answers, or simple a time of less thoughts to offer you peace. Here are some tools to help you get to that quiet place.

First for the novice, an appropriate duration of time is 5-10 minutes. Do not overtax yourself when you first begin. As you progress the duration of time can increase to 10-30 or 40 minutes, or for an hour or more. When meditating, we try to shut out the outside stimulus and force the mind inward. This is one reason that you try to sit as still as possible in the session. You are discarding all physical distraction and sensations. It is important to sit in the most comfortable position that you are able so that you will be able to sit still for a period of time. Prior to beginning your meditation, you could stretch your neck and move your head up and down and to either side, stretch your back a little and your shoulders. When you prepare in this way it is more likely that you will not be distracted by physical tension.

As you begin to meditate watch and observe your thoughts without any judgments or condemnation. When you have observed your thoughts for a while, begin to call the mind back like a little child. "We are breathing, we are letting go of these thoughts now." Refocus on the breath coming in through your nose again, if you become disturbed or distracted. If you are fearful be assured that nothing here can hurt you, this is a discovery of your inner self and a return to your TRUE nature. Once you have become accustomed to meditating you will be more comfortable with your true nature and realize that you are created to be naturally peaceful, and joyful, and that is the natural state of your being.

There are different techniques to get you to that silent and still place. Breathing is very important for transporting you to that place, a sound mantra like OM is helpful, a guided meditation, an open eye meditation that lets you have a focus on one particular object, point, or picture or candle can immediately take you to the still place, focusing on music, or particular elements of the music can accomplish that stillness. You can chose one or more of these techniques to get you there. copyright 2006 Yoga Kat
About the Author
Yoga Kat teaches children's yoga ages 3-6, 7-12yrs and Adults in NJ. The Author of the book DAUGHTER BELOVED and created a children's affirmation CD and an adult affirmation CD. Available for speaking and reached at yogakat@verizon.net or 201 970-9340--COMING SOON -http://www.thecircleofpeace.com
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