Fundamentals of Meditation


Today instead of quoting directly from my beloved Teacher and guide I thought I would respond to requests I received seeking more help in understanding the fundamentals in the meditation practise.

Unknown.jpegThe goal in meditation is to come into a place of    pure Being, allowing silence to pervade our entire being, at every level. 

Lets take the “pure Being” part first of all. When we allow ourselves to become caught up, and identified with the body and the senses we have moved away from pure Being. How do we know we are caught up? When we put the majority of our attention into how the body looks, how it feels, then the thoughts we create cause us to identify with the body. Think about how much time we spend grooming the body and how distressed we feel when that sleek outward appearance is affected in any way. Of course the media persuades us the way the body looks is everything.

To get to pure Being we have detach ourselves at every level, not    just physical. We need to detach from the mental, emotional and vital levels too. maxresdefault.jpg

The technique we use to disentangle ourselves is “witnessing.” For example we might notice the restlessness of the body. We observe it with no judgment, no conflict, complete acceptance of what is. We give attention to the mind. Is there a compulsion to think? We can quell the momentum of thinking by observing the thoughts as they come and go. When does a thought begin, when does it end? Is there a gap between the thoughts? What happens in that gap? Notice the growing silence and restfulness in the Being.

The second step will be focusing on our spinal column and the brain as we breathe out and breathe in. We make a circle or an orbit.

We breathe in at the third eye centre. 7-chakras-beginners.jpgThen breathe out taking our attention down the centerline of  the body, right down to the perineum area. Then breathe in keeping the pelvic area firm and grounded.      Breathe up along the spinal column  right up to the medulla point at the back of the neck and across the brain to the third eye.That’s how we connect to every level of being

How will we know when every level is coming into balance? There is a greater feeling of physicality, grounding in the body, and connection with the earth. The body feels more revitalized at the core in the gut. The being feels unburdened, filled with more love and compassion. The gift of the throat chakra is a greater sense of spaciousness and the listening power becomes stronger. The silence within the mind is more accentuated and our intuitive ability becomes greater. We now become aware that all is happening in the Divine, in that infinite consciousness of being.  

This is how we centre our consciousness in the Source of our being.

Let me know if this was useful for you. Can you better understand the goal of meditation and the steps we follow to achieve that goal?

 

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How to Free Chakra Blocks


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What is required when you begin this journey of going to the different chakras or energy centers, is trying as much as you can to expand the consciousness there, the consciousness of the body, the consciousness of the sexual power, the consciousness of the vitality, the consciousness of the emotionality, the consciousness of the space in the thinking and in the consciousness of mind. We need to observe the consciousness and try to expand the consciousness in each area.

Let’s take a typical example. You are having issues in the emotional area. The emotional part of us is deeper in the soul than the physical part of us. And we respond emotionally in a lot of ways  to events. We can see the limited emotions when we react with fear, with anger, with jealousy, with pride, with greed, with dominating power.  We can actually feel the energy that is involved in the emotion.  And for those of us who want to grow into higher consciousness, we see the limitations of those drives and we want to change them.

So energetically when you go to that area and try to breathe into and to free the prana there,  you find it difficult because the consciousness is being held captive by these patterns of behavior that are emotional and they are low consciousness operation.  You have this stifling feeling, as though you are being trapped and held there. So you want to take your mind, your breath and prana there. You also want to be conscious of the level at which you are operating. So you also want to change the mind set. You want to open the mind to the possibility of more consciousness. The mind is your doing tool.  It’s the main tool of the doer. Doership is in the mental field.

So take the mind there and in that doership experience you want to open up the consciousness to higher qualities of loving, compassion, kindness, empathy. And when you do that, you feel that the energy begins to open up and release is happening.

In this meditation and talk you will find detailed further guidance from Sri Vasudeva on how to free the blocks at every chakra centre. This is Day 14 of the 21 series on Total Well Being.

Meditation: Centre in the Consciousness


butterfly-insect-wing-wildlife-87039.jpegLet us give attention to the consciousness space. How do you do that? It may sound simple, but actually it is very profound. The consciousness space is that centre of being in which the ego operates, the sense of “I,” and it is that centre of conscious experience. It is that centre of pure awareness within you in which you are experiencing the elements of nature, the movement of the mind, the movement of emotion.

In that centre of being you have a consciousness of Self, you have a consciousness of the elements, and then you have a consciousness of the subtle reality of mind and emotion and intention. Centre in that experience of “I exist.” Not that you are the thinker, that’s a role. Not that you are the one who is feeling, that’s a role. Not the body, that’s another role. But that very centre of being where the “I” plays in the consciousness, assuming all these different roles.

The goal in the play is to stay beyond the roles that you play; to get to that centre where you can observe every role without being caught in it, identified with it as your only reality. Centering in the consciousness space means centering in the “I” experience, but beyond every role; beyond the thinker, beyond the one that feels, beyond that vital person that drives the body, and beyond the body.

This is an experience that comes with grace, as you open up to grace. You cannot have this experience just by wanting it, but by opening up your being with humility and with a sincere desire to manifest the all of you. Surrendering to that inner process of transformation, that inner space will open up to you. It cannot be had by the one that plays with the ego or is caught in the ego.

Excerpt of guided meditation by Sri Vasudeva, for more go to  www. blue-star.org

Putting Aside The Mantra


I love this picture of a rose. I want to hang this picture on my wall. I gather all my materials together to frame the picture. Then I get my drill to put a stud in the wall. What do I do with my tools when the picture is hung? I no longer need my tools because I’ve fulfilled my intention of hanging the picture.

Likewise I’ve been repeating the mantra during sitting meditation and periodically during the day. I feel I want to remind myself of my original intention for repeating the mantra. I started off the year seeking an expanded consciousness, resolving to open myself to the boundless Grace of the universe that is reaching out to me. I wanted to give attention to that subtle pull that draws me to the deepest part of my Being.

The mantra is a tool I have been using to quiet my mind so that I can allow that inner pull to become stronger and stronger, drawing me to that inner sacred space, where I can connect with the Source of my being. When I was hanging the picture it was clear when the task was completed and I no longer needed the tools. How will I know when I no longer need the mantra? I will  pay attention to the quietness of the mind, to notice when I become filled with the inner silence, to rejoice in that dynamic, buoyant space. In such a space the mantra seems like noise, it becomes an intrusion.

So now I know when I need to use the mantra and when I can put the mantra aside. Next I want to explore what expanded consciousness means to me.

Meditation & Bread rolls


Do you like dinner rolls? I’ve been baking bread, trying for a flavor, size and consistency of bread roll. I’ve been experimenting with the type of ingredients, where and how long I let the dough rise, how long I leave in the oven; you get the idea. I’d never eaten a bread roll like the one I was aiming for, but I figured I would know it when I had it. Last night I did it! The rolls were just perfect. I had done everything by hand but I didn’t measure anything, I didn’t record how I was doing it. I had made several attempts before so I had a good idea of the process to follow. So I’m not sure how to re-create the success from last night but I will have lots of fun trying to do so.

The whole process reminded me of the meditation practice. I sit with an intention, following the basic “recipe”. I pay attention to my physical posture, use the breath awareness, the mantra, the witnessing, to help me to quiet the mind, stabilize the emotions to begin to touch the sacred inner space. Sometimes through grace I have a beautiful experience, a fulfillment of the intention. Like my dinner rolls from last night, I have to keep trying to see how I can fulfill my intention again. You see where flexibility comes in? I have to be willing to approach the “recipe” with flexibility, to start examining every aspect of the meditation to see how I can approach it from a fresh perspective.

I’m not expecting the next time that my bread rolls will be exactly the same as they were last night. However they can be a similar flavor, consistency, taste. They may even be better. Just like I don’t expect every meditation to be the same. However, just like I can learn to make a bread roll that I like, so too I can learn to have a fulfilling meditation. It starts with getting comfortable with the basic “recipe” then beginning to tweak that recipe to suit my needs, having fun along the way.

I do so love the meditation practice :).  Somehow I think you guessed that :). I wonder is there some aspect of meditation you would like us to explore together? Some way that it can be more enjoyable for you?

 

 

Sending out waves and waves of peace, love and joy


Today I continue the quest to develop  the spirit of flexibility. I am inspired by the  Book of Tibetan Elders This book is a set of interviews describing the teachings from the elders as well as the experience of meeting them.

Many of these elders have experienced tremendous hardship as they escaped from Tibet. It’s so heart warming to read of their journey to develop compassion for the Chinese occupiers. I can see how powerful meditation can be in cultivating spiritual qualities the need for patience,  for self examination, for systematic practice.

It’s been interesting reading the book with the intention of finding out about flexibility. The book brings home the value of having a personal guide. One who will give practical advice on how to bring the teachings into daily life, how to work with the mind, how to read and interpret the signals from the Higher Self and most important one who will share the process so that the seeker can grow in self awareness and self mastery.

On page 203 there is a discussion about the relationship between the master and the student.

“The student is someone who is able to see a gem, to be able to recognize when a master is special……We need to see beyond the form, straight into the essence. If we have this capacity it means we have something special…. When you have been touched by a master things happen for you… quicken and progress”.

This is also my experience, that having a guide, a coach who takes an interest in my personal practice makes the world of difference. I in turn offer what I can in terms of support to those who seek it.

Please join in spirit in a meditation as we seek to center ourselves in the Source of our being, to feel the connection with each other and to send out into our world waves and waves of peace, love and joy.

What is really “mine”?


It’s the first day in November, a new month, a new beginning. I’m happy to be back home in Ottawa again. I’m excited to be back with you again too. I’ve had time to realize how much I enjoy and look forward to these conversations we have with each other. Thank you for your presence, your attention, your caring, your support on the spiritual journey.

As I unpack and get settled I’m struck by how I describe objects and experiences… the inner language. Take the word “my” for example. It’s very interesting the times that I use it. Sometimes it reveals to me how caught up I am in a situation mistakenly thinking this idea, object or relationship is “mine”, when it is only around me for a certain period of time, it’s on loan, so to speak,  there will come a time when I exchange it for another. What is really “mine”?

I notice that if I change the use of the word “my” to a more neutral word like “the” then the  inner experience is different. This is not always practical to do in interactions with others. If someone asks, “What is your name?” then for convention I will respond, ” My name is Madhavi.” But in my inner world I can remind myself that this is a temporary name and my real identity is consciousness.

Now it’s not so easy to do this practice when I’m very caught up and off centered. However the more I practice it the more chances I have of remembering it when I’m challenged.

Do you notice the inner language? Have you tried to make changes?  What kind of strategies do you use?

Wishing you many novel spiritual experiences this November!

Affirmations That are Exciting my Soul Today


Isn’t the use of mantra and affirmation so amazing? Today I’m aware that when I repeat affirmations, prayer or mantras, I listen to it as I say it; and try to say it continuously with awareness, holding the present moment until the affirmation, prayer or mantra begins to stay in the mind very powerfully.  So it moves beyond just the voice. Even if I stop saying it, the repeating in the mind continues.  As it goes deeper, as I give attention and importance to it, it touches my heart and I become passionate about my prayer, affirmation or mantra. As I take that passion further, I begin to feel the power of it in my being.

Here are the affirmations that are exciting my soul today:

  • I am a spark of the Divine fire.
  •  I exist in a field of infinite possibilities.
  •  I am the master of my destiny.
  •  I am the master of my thoughts.

I’d love to hear your feelings about mantra and affirmation. How do you use them? Which do you find yourself using most often?

Process of Realizing the Ultimate Power of Mantra


Day 32: When we repeat affirmations, prayer or mantras, the first step is to listen to it as we say it; and say it continuously with awareness, holding the present moment until the affirmation, prayer or mantra begins to stay in the mind very powerfully.  So it moves beyond just the voice. Even if you stop saying it, the repeating in the mind continues.  As it goes deeper, as you give attention and importance to it, it touches the heart and you become passionate about your prayer, affirmation or mantra. As you take that passion further, you begin to feel the power of it in your being.  You begin to realise the fruit of the mantra or the prayer or the affirmation.  You begin to feel it as an experience in your being.  You become what you are praying for, what you are affirming, or where the mantra is leading you.  The ultimate is to become exactly what you are saying, repeating or intending.

Mantra – Powerful Tools on the Journey

How powerful these tools are to hold us in that energy; to hold our mind in a very positive and protective space; to keep us aligned to our vision, and; to hold us to our journey.  I love to use these so that I can energise my physical body; I can energise my being in the human experience and I can create harmony in the space around me.  Do not overlook these, these are powerful tools on the journey.  Use them.

Secrets to Peace of Mind


Day 31: It is important to remember that you can live in the world, you can be involved in everything and still have that inner space of freedom and true well-being as you go on. Here are a few tips that can help you in dealing with this. First is the need to really understand that there is Divine Order in the Universe; that everything that happens, happens for a reason. There is meaning and purpose in every event! So immediately you understand this, there is an acceptance of what is, and there is a desire to use this awareness to take you deeper. If everything is in Divine Order around me, then this is happening for a purpose, whatever it is. I need to see the meaning of this. What does it mean for me?  What lesson does it have for me? What is my learning outcome from this event?  What is the blessing that I am receiving in terms of my spiritual growth?  When we begin to look at that, then we become excited about becoming stronger to overcome our weaknesses; if our weakness is exposed in events around us.

Then there is the other point of surrendering. When you see Divine Order then you want to surrender. You would not want to fight with the things around you.   You want to learn, you want to accept them and then you want to align your will with the Universal Will. That brings a lot of peace of mind. When you see that circumstances around you are leading in a particular direction, you don’t want to fight with that! That is the Universe you are fighting with.  You want to understand the situation completely and you want to align your will with that Universal Will. That is the mark of a wise person. And that brings a lot of peace of mind and a great surge of energy from your soul as you begin to align your will with the Universal or Divine Will.

Therefore, when you begin to observe these principles that I have given to you, peace of mind will be there.  Even though you might be challenged, you understand how to surrender, you look carefully at the object of your desire and how firm you are, so that you do not give your power away to any other pattern of behaviour in you that will lead you away from your goal.  So, you are discriminating and you maintain a discipline of behaviour,  thinking and  acting that is in line with your desire – your vision.  Once you do that, there is integration inside. Peace of mind is easy.  When you sit, the mind becomes your friend.