Sunday, October 28, 2007

How I Meditate

i've been meaning to write and post this here for weeks already, around two months now, i think. but i never got around to it. still, the promptings come, and they are especially strongest when i meditate.

i don't know why; who am i to presume someone would want to read me explain how i meditate? but i guess, if the urgings come still, after all this time, then i am being called to do just that. maybe this will help someone out there who's reading this.

a major part of my hesitation is because explaining how i meditate is a very private, intimate matter. it's almost like explaining how i take a bath and then inviting the reader to watch me do it!

come to think of it, meditation is like that for me: a bath, a spiritual bath, more especially. it's also like a spiritual charging session, just like how we charge our cellphones when the batteries run low, although in meditation, you don't have to wait for the batteries to run low. the more you meditate, the more you amp up your energies and expand your capacity for more power, actually.

ohhh i don't meditate everyday; i find that an hour's good and focused meditation today lasts me three good full-energy and feel-good days. so i seem to have developed a rhythm of my own, this 1 hour-to-3 days pattern, although i basically just meditate on demand, not to a fixed schedule.

one time, last first week of June, when i was falling out of an almost-relationship which still broke my heart so bad anyway, i meditated like three to four times a day (!) just to keep my self from spiraling down into despair. although, outwardly, my world was crumbling and my heart was breaking, strangely, inwardly, it was also my strongest, most peaceful experience. i re-discovered a "me" which was untouchable, indestructible by externals, and i re-discovered a most intimate, most loving, most comforting relationship with my God again, a sense of intimacy i only had a glimpse of in my teens, when i started developing a more personal prayer life, in preparation for what i thought i wanted to be: a nun (!). : )

anyway, enough rambling now.

please note that my meditation practice as i practice it now is the result of around two years' intense spiritual searching, in the guise of learning the ways of manifesting desires and the powers of the mind, on and off, by trial and error, until i have come to a place where it is more on than off now. although i have become quite adept at my magical manifesting powers (yes, it exists, for all of us! : > ), my main focus and desire now is just really to stay in touch and keep in touch with my God/Goddess within, with my spiritual center and core, so to speak.

i would like to credit The Meditation Society of Australia, which offers a free guided online meditation course, in helping me get into and stay with my meditation practice now.

since i was 17 or 18, i've read many books on meditation, and tried quite a number, but eventually lost steam along the way. maybe i wasn't ready then and i'm ready now; or maybe, it's also the fact that in The Meditation Society, there is not a lot of mumbo-jumbo stuff, no elaborate exercises to do, and you can start with only 5 minutes to spare a day. it's simple and it mixes the best of all meditation disciplines.


***

okay, so here goes. here is how i meditate:

1. i take out my "portable meditation altar" composed of a cloth on which to place my meditation candle on, my meditation candle, my box of matches, my birthstone (Amethyst) and a special little bottle on a necklace chain which contains sand from the Holy Land, both given to me by my good friend Antonia. the birthstone and the bottle are, for me, sort of my "amulets", or just some physical objects that hold special meaning for me and which i use to pump up with my special intentions, my two remaining dreams in life.

it's "portable" because i place all these things in a special pink-colored beauty case which i only use for this purpose, and i carry it around with me, even when i travel. so it's like i can build my own personal altar and meditation space anywhere.

2. i sit cross-legged, but not rigidly so like in some Yoga positions. sitting down cross-legged is the best position, ive found, to keep my self both alert and relaxed.

so i calm my self down and center my self by doing deep breathing, using a mantra ive coined my self-- "Love, Joy, Peace, Abundance" -- the qualities i basically just want to live in my life. i breathe in Love, Joy, Peace, Abundance; i breathe out un-Love, un-Peace, un-Joy, un-Abundance. i say this to my self as i breathe in and breathe out.

sometimes, it takes just 3 deep breaths, sometimes 7, sometimes more. it depends on how initially stressed and unfocused i am, but i use the spiritual numbers of 3, 7 and 9 to help me calm down and focus.

3. then, it's a prayer and blessing session for me. i've incorporated my Catholic prayer traditions here because they mean a lot to me and they help me.

what i do is instead of thinking about all my and other people's problems, i just take each thought/concern/need one by one, imagine the person or the concern basked in golden-yellow light, and ask God to bless and heal and transform them as God sees fit. i also pray the prayer of the Holy Spirit ("Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of thy faithful and enkindle in them the Fire of Thy Love...") for each one, while imagining small fires burning in the person's heart, then mind, then both fires raised up Above.

after i've gone through all the concerns and other people's concerns i can think of, or am prompted to think of, i imagine raising them all up Above, like gathering them all together and offering them all up to God Above, all the time also imagining them being burned by the Violet Fire of healing, transformation and wholeness, and praying the Violet Fire prayer:

"We are beings of Violet Fire, the purity that God desires."

i say this to my self, sometimes aloud, sometimes silently, while imagining all the concerns and people i prayed for being burned and transformed by the Violet Fire, that God is taking all of them as my offering, that they are like incense being burnt, and im offering them all up to God to take care of... so that what is finally left is just me, empty, ready, expectant me-- empty, ready and expectant for my time and communion with my God, alone, at last.

4. at this point, my mind is cleared, and worrisome thoughts don't keep coming back, because in my mind, they all have already been raised up. so it is just between me and my God now.

it is now that i do my own Violet Fire prayer--

"I am a being of Violet Fire, the purity that God desires."

--as i slowly imagine each of my chakras, from the 7th (bottom) up, vibrating first as a circle in that area, and then filling my whole being with its color, and then fading back into its area. this is my chakra (spiritual centers) cleansing exercise part.

there used to be a time when the colors that would come up were dull and murky, especially in the 7th (bottom of the spine area: survival) and 6th (the gonads area: creativity, sexuality) chakras, but over time, with more meditation and also the physical changes i was naturally prompted to make in my life, they have gotten clearer and brighter now, in the healthy colors that they are meant to be.

5. after my chakra cleansing, this is now the time that i "bring down" the powers/energies of Heaven to me by imagining my self basking in White Light, while i just slowly chant to my self each of my mantra qualities.

i say "Love" and i imagine a pink heart touching down on the crown of my head as it infuses my whole being with pink, glowing, loving energy. i stay with this for a while and just enjoy the feeling of Love, flowing to me, and flowing out through me.

i say "Joy" and i imagine a light yellow smiley face floating down to the crown of my head even as light yellow light infuses my being and i feel Joy. i stay with this for a while and just enjoy the feeling of Joy, flowing to me, and flowing out through me.

i say "Peace" and i imagine a white laser light beaming down from above to touch my crown and infuse my entire being with Peace. i stay with this for a while and just enjoy the feeling of Peace, flowing to me, and flowing out through me.

sometimes, i also pray St. Francis' Prayer ("Lord, make me an instrument of Your Peace...") to help me along, and i imagine each of my chakras being activated by this light (by the way, i do the same for Love and Joy, too, imagine each of my chakras being activated by their lights).

i say "Abundance" and i imagine a golden-yellow light beaming down from above to touch my crown, infuse my whole being, and activate my chakras with Abundance. i stay with this for a while and just enjoy the feeling of Abundance, flowing to me, and flowing out through me.

sometimes, i also say a non-denominational Abundance prayer i've found a year ago (you're supposed to write it down 10 to 20 times a day, and see your life change; it uses "I" but i use "We"/"Our" to include my children, other loved ones and i):

"God's Wealth is circulating in our lives. God's Wealth flows to us and through us in avalanches of Abundance. All our needs, desires and goals are instantaneously met, because we are one with God, and God is our Infinite and Abundant Supply, and God is everything."

6. after this, i just sit still and stay there, chanting to my self my final self-coined mantra:

"I am in the Heart of God.
I bask in God's Love and Abundance."


and i just stay there and bask in God's Love and Abundance.

this is my favorite part. i am just there, one with my God, my Father/Mother, and all is right with the world. i need to do nothing; i just be me, and just be there.

many times now, i experience moments of bliss in this phase. and sometimes, i feel like i want to stay here forever.

i just stay here and bask and wait. sometimes, i ask specific questions. sometimes i just ask for a general message or advice as guidance for my day. and always, i get answers. if not in meditation itself, it's during the course of the day.

the answers mostly come as simple words in a still, strong voice that comes through. most often too, i get images. sometimes, the meanings are immediately clear. sometimes not, so after meditation, i go to Google to search for them even! : )

during the course of the day, they come as messages to me from other people; some words some people say to me strike me as suddenly very meaningful. sometimes, they come as certain "coincidences" that happen.

what i love about this experience is that it has taught me to just be still, and watch and wait with God. it has carried over to how i behave in my daily life now. i am not as easily troubled or stressed by the daily demands or disruptions of my day. i know, from experience now, that at core, i am still, and everything is alright.

i am also learning to be more sensitive to my body's signals, as well as to intuitive insights, and to the natural flows of energies within and without, to discern the natural rhythms and cycles of life and relationships, and it helps me in my daily life to be more attuned to Life this way, to just go with the flow... and i am happier, more successful and productive and joyful in every area of my life this way.

most of all, i am learning to be patient, and to trust, in the ways of God and Life, even if many times, i do not understand and i do not know what lies ahead. somehow, i know, from this intimate experience with my God, i am loved and taken care of, whatever happens anyway. so i do not worry much anymore. even if a worry comes up these days, i am quick to recognize them as such and am able to quickly dissipate them too. it's like a quick toxin-recognition mechanism i've developed now: the best antibiotic of all, stopping the toxin before it even gets in! : )

7. there comes a time in my meditation when i'm feeling full/well-fed, and am urged now to move out, move on and go ahead with the rest of my day. i close it with a thank you prayer that covers everything:

"Thank you God, for all the blessings we have received, all the blessings we are receiving, and all the blessings coming our way!!!"

i usually repeat this three times while extending my arms outward to receive all the blessings, and then "wrap them up" by closing my hands together in prayer.

oh, i also "pump up my amulets", too, : ) by holding each of them over the candle flame, turning them around 7 times for each item, and praying my thank you mantra for my only two lifelong dreams now:

(holding the Amethyst) "Thank you, God, for my True Soulmate and I and our healthy, happy, abundant Love, Friendship and Marriage for the rest of our lives!"

(holding the bottle with the sand from the Holy Land0 "Thank you, God, for my being an internationally-published, best-selling, critically-acclaimed and well-loved author of children's and other books, whose stories touch and transform people's lives, and live on long after I do!" : )

why say thank you before it happens? in manifesting principles, it's best to state your intents as if they are happening now, because the Mind does not recognize past-present-future, and when you state them as happening now, or already happened, the Mind creates it for you as happening now, or already happened. i mix in the thank you, because i have found that saying thank you for whatever helps me get into a quick feel-good, feel-right place (hard to say thank you to to God for something mean and petty and disempowering of other people...)and the feel-good part is a necessary ingredient of successful manifesting, to raise one's vibes and to make one's vibes align with the vibes of one's desires, if you really want to be technical about this.

all in all, i just like saying thank you to God. it makes me feel good, and it makes me feel good about my dreams already coming true as i thank for them.

***

these 7 steps might sound like they take a long time, but actually, it is only step 3 which, for me, seems to take a long time these days, because i find my self praying more and more for others than for my self, and there are many loved ones and concerns of others on my list!

a full session like this usually takes me around 40 minutes to an hour, although i must remind you, don't let this scare you: i started with only 5 minutes a day using The Meditation Society's step by step course lessons... until i started developing my own "program" that fits my own particular needs, preferences and tastes, and which feels the rightest for me. : )

so, this is it.

this is how i meditate.

i started meditating because i wanted certain things and certain relationships to happen in my life two years ago. but now, i end up meditating just because i love most communing with my God...

and surprise, surprise, i got the "certain things and certain relationships"-- and more!-- ive always dreamed about, now! : )

i can understand better now that biblical injunction: "Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and His Righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you."

when i started i thought i was using New Age principles and techniques to make my life better. i end up now actually being more closely rooted in my faith, even appreciative of my religious tradition, and my life is so much happier, more peaceful and abundant, not because i did anything much to acquire or achieve them, but because i just settled into being me, being still, and being one with my God, as much as i could. all other things and activities just flowed.

i hope this sharing helps.

God bless you as you go on your way.
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