Meditation Tips for going deep in to meditation
The first and foremost thing for going deep in to meditation is to understand the mind games. Any thing that comes out of mind can never lead us towards meditation. Mind can never be the tool to get out of mind. But at the same time mind will give logical reasons to us saying that it is helping us in every possible way to go deep in meditation. E.g. Mind can take the responsibility of reading this article so that you can go deep in meditation. But in reality this is another trick of mind.
Secondly if we look deeper, then going deep in meditation is not an achievement. Meditation is itself a device which we are using to seek enlightenment or get rid of Mind. But Mind is asking this question “tips for going deep in to meditation”. So here Mind is making meditation another goal. Some people want to achieve in materialistic world and some in spiritual world but difference is not much. In both the areas mind is playing its game. So for going deep in to meditation one should be aware of mind games.
one understand Mind and how it deceives us then journey
becomes very easier. I don’t have any rivalry with the
mind because in reality there is no such thing as mind
and if I start fighting with mind then indirectly I will
be giving power to mind. Mind is like a dream which does
not have any existence but as long as I give importance
to it, it has a life.
Secondly the Sages say our real nature is “Truth, Bliss and Consciousness. Time and space does not exist in that state. One is ever blissful, relaxed and one takes decision moment to moment”. So any thing which brings us closer to this state of the Sages could be helpful in going deep in meditation.
Just to go further I want to share one small story: Once five blind men came across an elephant. The first blind man touched the tail of elephant and the second one touched the legs and the third one touched the trunk and so on. When they were asked to describe the elephant they told about the part which they had touched. They were telling a lie but that was not the complete truth also. But if they had touched other parts of the elephant also; like from the trunk they touched the tail and then legs and so on. Then they would definitely had a better idea of the shape of elephant.
Similarly when we discuss tips for going deep in meditation then they should be practiced together to have more depth in meditation or one can start slowly. Initially one can become comfortable with one tip and then can add another tip and then another tip. But at the same time be aware of mind games and ego. These tips are helpful but NOT ESSENTIAL for going deep in to meditation. One should always be spontaneous and listen to one's inner voice or intuition.
1. Preparing the body: Through out the ages the Body has been condemned. It’s been called full of diseases, puss etc. That is perfectly right - the body will die one day. But this body is the temple for soul also. In this very body the divine can descend one day. So we should worship the body as we worship the divine yet at the same time having no attachment to the body.
a. Body has needs and mind has desire. Body needs are like food, sleep, comfort etc and mind needs are desires like fame, popularity, money etc. Body needs can be fulfilled and should be fulfilled. But Mind's needs can never be fulfilled and should never be tried to fulfill.
b. Our human body is basically meant to eat Vegetarian food. Sages have defined three types of Gunas (nature) which are Tamasic, Rajasic and Satwic. In this Satwic Guna is best for meditation and is developed with vegetarian food.
c. Right food is very essential as it nourishes our body. In vegetarian food, also one should eat right food, which our body needs and which can be easily digested also. E.g. proper chewing of food is very good. If we too eat too much then we will fall asleep or become lethargic. Because to digest the food which we have eaten, our body sends energy to our stomach and the more food we eat, the more energy is required by stomach. So sleep comes to us, to temporary shut down other works of the body to conserve energy.
d. Food has two parts gross and subtle. Subtle part is the vibrations associated with the food. Preferably one should prepare the food himself. Because one who prepares the food his energy is also added in the food. So while preparing the food our mental state should be very good. Doctors say during pregnancy if the mother is angry then the child also experience the anger of the mother. Same is the case with our food.
e. One another very good practice followed in rural India are that they offer prepared food to their chosen deity and then they eat it with devotion. And they believe that food is tasted by God and now this food has become Prasad (offering from God to the devotee).
So their eating become very meditative and secondly while preparing food they are so much devoted because they are going to offer this food to the deity - that preparing food becomes a prayer for them. A small activity changes their whole state. Meditation is not some thing which we do 30 minutes in a day. Meditation means the awareness with which we do things.
e.g. one is preparing food for his chosen deity from his heart then this simple activity is meditation. Any thing which brings us closer to a joyful yet relaxed state is meditation.
Any thing can become
g. No fruits should be eaten immediately after food. Fruits can be eaten 30 minutes before meal as it spoils the digestion.
h. Very often people drink water immediately after food. That is another bad example. When we eat food then to digest that food immediately some acid is released in the stomach and if we drink water then that acid gets diluted and it disturbs the digestion. Ideally water should be drink 30 minutes after the food or 1-2 sip of water can be taken during meal as required.
i. Proper exercise: Either we don’t do any exercise or we do exercise which is more than required. Exercise makes us active and makes the free flow of Prana (life force). Many times it happens we fall asleep during meditation. Yoga is very useful for giving us calmness of mind and agility to Body.
2. Preparing the Mind: the moment we get the idea that we should meditate. From that moment onwards we should start watching the mind. What trick mind is going to play? Mind does not love meditation but if mind is asking us to meditate then some trick must be there.
a. Some years ago I used to go to a meditation center to meditate after my office hours and I used to be very much excited to reach the meditation center. Usually I used to walk briskly and at some times I used to run to reach to the center. Slowly I realized that while coming to the meditation center I used to become very excited and during the first 10-15 minutes of meditation I was watching this excitement only. So the point is the moment we become aware of doing meditation then meditation should start from that moment itself and secondly we should always maintain mental calmness.
b. Many times during the day we become sad,
disturbed or angry and we lose our composure. These are
occasions when we should try to witness these emotions.
Because if we are calm through out the day then with
that calmness we will be entering inside meditation.
I was reading someone's experience of the 40 day
meditation camp conducted by Swami Chaitanya Bharti.
In this camp newspapers and television are not allowed.
When the person came back from meditation camp after 40
days and he read the newspaper - he found that world has
not changed a bit. Newspaper were still filled with
stories of rape, crime, scandals, accidents etc. Same is
the case with movies and televisions. Today's media is a
good excuse for the mind to work. Newspapers,
television, movies are food for Mind.
3. Body and mind are not separate but they are one: During meditation when our thoughts slow down then automatically our breathing becomes very rhythmic and slow. Body and mind are not only related but one. So what ever we eat, what ever we think, desire, dream affects us. What ever we eat affects our gross body and subtle part of it affects our mind. Any thing that creates excitement affects the mind. Food is not the only intake for us. We take food through vision, smell and sound also. These all things affect our mental state and go a long way in helping the mediator.
a. Vegetarian food is so much emphasized for the meditator. Because with non-vegetarian food one becomes more angry, cruel or Tamasic. But at the same time if non-vegetarian person wants to meditate then that person is not stopped from meditation. Over the period of time when meditation matures and then automatically the person would like to eat vegetarian food. Nothing should be forced in the path of meditation. Any thing which is non-essential will drop on its own.
b. The company of sages or good people is advised. I firmly believe when some one talks with me then in a subtle way that person is interacting with all those people who have shaped my life in a major way.
c. Thinking good thoughts is considered noble. But I feel good thoughts are also thoughts. Good or bad are just our criteria to judge. So I don’t recommend any type of thoughts. But witnessing of thoughts.
d. Alcohol is another factor which makes us excited. Any sort of drug which makes us excited takes us away from meditation. Tantra makes use of alcohol for meditation but they have special methods and hidden schools where they know how to make right use of alcohol.
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