We have been reviewing the many forms and approaches of Meditation that can be utilized into a daily practice. The key objective of Meditation whatever form it takes, is to connect to your Self. The Whole set of Self; inner self, outer self, higher self, the real self, the perceived self, the spiritual self, the energetic self and even the etheric self in order to achieve Self Realization.
Meditation is a practice that allows you to build awareness or consciousness and helps to increase our awareness through all our senses. Know too that all connectors of Mind, Body, Feelings/ Emotions, and Spirit will be affected positively. The result throughout the Meditative experience will be a sense of peace, balance, calm, and happiness.
“The Zen of Buttering Bread” is an expression I have heard and interpreted to mean; Performing a task (body) with complete presence of mind, feeling and spirit, to experience the full moment and enjoy it with all your senses awake and alive. This is a key ingredient in Mindfulness Meditation. Pick a daily task and practice being fully present and aware. Like vacuuming: control of your body movements, take in what you smell – dust burning, hear – music of the machine, see – a clear floor, feel – no grit, fluffy carpet. Go deeper to the sense of how you feel in your thoughts. “I can do this, I am in control. I can create change. Look what I have achieved. I like the beauty I see all around. It is just as I imagined the space could be.” Connect with the senses to feel and enjoy the experience, the results achieved and what you have created. By applying this practice to simple tasks allows you to become comfortable with meditation. Then you can confidently apply it to other tasks, situations, and moments throughout your day. Before you know it you will be able to go deeper to explore more feelings, thought processes, beliefs, ideas, concepts, memories, senses and dreams.
Practicing mindfulness and applying it to your dreams is a type of visualization meditation. Picture the outcome situation or action in your mind as real and occurring now in the present moment. Construct it like you want the outcome to be, complete with dialogue, actions, emotions and facial expressions. Play it over and over in your mind like a movie. Latter be thrilled how what you had imaged and pictures came to be. You can apply visualization practices to thoughts, feelings, and actions for all outcomes. Allow it to come not just from the mind alone, but from the whole body. This whole body visualization is often referred to as coming from ‘Third Eye”, an energy opening in the middle of the forehead. This makes visualization a broad, easy and wonderful meditation technique, limited only by your own imagination and desires. Athletes use this to make goals, score higher points, execute the perfect jump, and win the game. I use it to speak in groups, complete interviews and a plan a dinner with friends.
Visualizing with your third eye or your mind’s eye is a form of expression. Expressing yourself, in any way, can also be built into a form of meditation, and incorporates the words of your mind with feelings, and the spiritual energy. Listen to an artist talk about how they created the painting, or piece of music and you can hear how their mind, vision, feelings, and skills combined in-spirit to create beauty. All forms of creative expression can become a ‘Zen’ action. Practice with actions like; cooking, baking, drawing, dancing, painting, woodworking, gardening, staring into space, humming, singing and so much more.
The success of scrapbooking, doodling and adult colouring books over the past few years shows how simple actions and expressions can become a meditation. Allow yourself to focus completely onto a task of scribbling or colouring and then allow yourself to be fully in the moment of that action and experience. Or go into a meditative state first and then start to draw, doodle or colour and see what you create, or what is released from within yourself. You will be amazed.
Practicing a Walking Meditation is another way to just be with your Self and awaken your senses. You do not need to select a destination or a path way, or a purpose of completion. You just walk, around the block, through your yard, a park, a mall. As you start you allow your mind to slow down to observe where it flows to. Either in thoughts or dialogue, or memories and images, allow it to empty, so there is no more chatter, just stillness. Do not evaluate them as good or bad or weird or try to figure out why you thought about it. Trust that they all good. That they are getting unstuck from your body / mind cell memory that and just let them flow around and out.
Open your senses. Let your eyes relax and let them travel to take in what is all around you. Then let them focus on whatever item or object they are attracted too. Be aware of what you are hearing. What sounds are being sung around you. Listen to the rhythm the wind makes trough the leaves of the trees or the rapture of the traffic and street sounds. Can you smell the ground, flowers or the scents in the air, or perfume in a store. What memories are flashing through your mind as your senses awaken? What dreams are being released from deep within your heart? Walk in silence and enjoy the sensation you are experiencing. Be aware of what you are experiencing and how it moves through your body, how it alters mind and expands your imagination how it tingles your senses, releases feelings, and lifts the spirit to change your experiences.
These suggestions are some ways we can connect to our Self through Meditation utilizing the avenues of Body, Mind, Feelings, Actions, Spirit and within your environment. Whatever form or method from the Art of Meditation you try and follow, know that you affect one or all of the elements. No matter how small the practice, the amount of time given to it, or degree of complexity, you can and will have success with Meditation. Just try it. Build your own practice. Be Aware with all that you do. Be Well with all your experiences.