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PRACTICAL MEDITATION (intended for beginners)... Do yourself a favor

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posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 01:51 PM
Disclaimer: There are so many people out there who will advise against meditating, try saying that the benefits of meditation should be/are available only to some elite group of spiritually-superior minds, or carry on about how meditative practice is occult or satanic and opens your life up to all kinds of nasty spiritual entities who will haunt you until you have "cleansed" yourself (and your home if you opt for the deluxe package for only $99.95). Don't be intimidated by that and rest assured that meditation is a totally natural function actually practiced in some form by nearly every major religion (whether they realize it or not). The men in suits don't want you to meditate. They want you to come home from your job overworked and stressed, microwave the kids some food, and contemplate how you're going to pay your bills while you watch "prime time" television. They want you to fall asleep by taking that habit forming pill the doctor prescribed you, and then take another pill to counteract the side effects of the first. Sorry for the negative imagery, but what I'm trying to tell you is that YOU have everything you need within you to alleviate that stress. end rant

OK! If you've never meditated before you should be bursting at the seams with exhilaration knowing that there is something inside of you right now that doesn't cost a dime and is both powerful and healing.

The benefits certainly aren't limited to stress relief and lowering blood pressure, which is what our Western world commonly aims to achieve through meditation. Still, the Western world has contributed much to the science of meditation - some interesting information in this link on What Happens to the Brain During Meditation. With practice you can go deeper and deeper into your mind and experience parts of yourself that you may not in a normal state. You can deal with issues from your past and enhance your creativity. You can better process information and ready yourself to more appropriately deal with conflicts that may arise in your life.

I would like to share the meditation technique that I found worked for me as a teenager by taking pieces from several different techniques. Part of the beauty is that you are completely free to create your own meditation.

First, STRETCH. I usually do the most basic of stretches which I also do when I wake up in the morning (I find that meditating first thing in the morning is the easiest and most productive time). Bend down and touch your toes; stretch your arms; push your chest out and arch your back; touch toes while sitting down; stretch your neck from side to side and up and down; etc. Whatever leaves you feeling limber and relaxed.

Find a comfortable space and use any posture that is comfortable and in which you can remain very still and relaxed. Meditation is usually more productive when you have a set time(s) for doing it each day. When I was starting out I was most comfortable lying flat on my back, but that is sometimes not advised because it is easy to fall asleep especially if you are on your own bed. I'm rather tall with an athletic build and I use either the "Burmese" posture or, if I've stretched well, the "half lotus" posture (pictured above). Just like with everything else, whatever works for you. I prefer to either meditate in a darkened room or outside, especially on a sunny morning, which takes me to the next step...
Listen to the sounds of nature, or if you are indoors put on some relaxing music if you wish. There is a lot of great meditation music on YouTube as well as binaural beats, which can be helpful but should not be depended on. Sometimes the best way to meditate is with no outside stimuli. There are also a million guided meditation videos on YT often coupled with music. Give them a try, I have found them helpful, but they become very easy to rely too heavily upon and I have found them to limit how far one can go by giving exact instructions.

Meditation is all about visualization and BREATHING. Close your eyes and imagine that the universe in front of your face goes on forever and ever. At the same time feel your awareness behind you inflating infinitely into the universe. Visualize your own body and the space that you're in. Breath deep and steadily. Try counting your breath in whatever increments work for you - it can be a good way to focus. Every time you inhale, with your eyes closed, imagine clean white light going in through your nose and when you exhale imagine with all of your creativity that the stress you harbor in your mind and body is being expelled as dark, murky air. Breathe in the clean, energized air once again and repeat. You will relax deeper and deeper with every breath. Keep telling yourself that... say in your mind "I am relaxing, this is my time to relax". You need those affirmations for positive results. Feel all of your muscles relaxing deeply. Starting with your feet and going up to your head, become very aware of each body part and direct your healing breath to each part to relax any stress away. If you are having trouble visualizing, or if you just don't want to keep your eyes closed, a candle can be very helpful for keeping your concentration. I sometimes prefer to meditate while gazing into the flame.

Eventually you will realize a familiar calm encompassing the whole of your being. Just sit for as long as you wish, continuing to breathe deeply and naturally. If a thought comes to mind don't become frustrated trying to fight it away, just let it be - let it float away. You should have a completely clear mind, this is your time, the weight of the world is not on your shoulders right now and your duty to Planet Earth at this very moment is to relax and simply BE. I often like to imagine I am sitting on a cloud, or maybe in a desert, or in a forest. I imagine with everything I have that I can hear the trees creaking and I can feel the wind on my face. I can smell the pine.

When you are ready, simply open your eyes and allow the world to welcome you back. Be appreciative for what you just experienced as both the result of your own efforts and a gift that has been bestowed upon you. No matter what you believe, your life is a gift. Remember that while some benefits of mediation can be realized after one session, the key to really reaping the rewards comes with long-term meditation and practice... daily practice if possible. It can take as little as a few minutes, and there are little things you can do during the day to alleviate stress such as deep breathing techniques.

Go forth with positive intentions in mind and do your best to radiate positive vibrations - it can make a huge difference in all of your relationships and undertakings. Meditation, especially when used in conjunction with other healthy habits, can be a useful tool for realigning your life, realizing your full potential, and maintaining a healthy life for people of all
edit on 2014-04-16T15:05:29-05:002014290405kWedAmerica/ChicagobWed, 16 Apr 2014 15:05:29 -0500 by cosmikDebris because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 03:07 PM

More Resources

Crystals and Colors and Chakras - I put this one on top because it's a thread straight from ATS (credit to user Jennyfrenzy and all other contributors) that deals with, of course, what the title says. I can't speak for the effect of crystals on meditation from experience, but I can attest to the existence of chakras, and the importance of meditating on them. For more chakra info see below.

The 7 Chakras for Beginners and Guided Chakra Meditation

Mindcalming Sessions - B.W. Salzman's awesome meditation video series. Quick effective guided meditations.

Hemi-Sync - The Monroe Institute's sound technology designed to aid meditative states.

Brainwave Entrainment - a good collection of binaural beats and isochronic tones on Youtube.

Guided Meditation - a collection featuring guided meditations focusing on many areas.

Walking Meditation - an different sort of technique.

Yoga Journal - a website with any and every resource related to yoga.

Transcendental Meditation - Not something I personally practice but the teachings therein resonate with a lot of folks.

Reiki Music - good for any type of meditation.

A Skeptical View of Meditation - because you should review all sides before deciding for yourself.

A Christian's Guide to Meditation - see above
edit on 2014-04-16T15:26:30-05:002014300426kWedAmerica/ChicagobWed, 16 Apr 2014 15:26:30 -0500 by cosmikDebris because: (no reason given)

edit on 2014-04-16T16:51:58-05:002014580451kWedAmerica/ChicagobWed, 16 Apr 2014 16:51:58 -0500 by cosmikDebris because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 04:20 PM
This is a really nice thread. I am marking it as a resource.
Thank you for posting!

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 04:37 PM
I really want to learn how to slow my mind down. I feel like I'm always stuck in either the past or the future and am rarely able to just appreciate the current moment.

I think this thread is going to be very helpful on my journey.

Thanks for taking the time to share this.

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 04:42 PM

I really want to learn how to slow my mind down. I feel like I'm always stuck in either the past or the future and am rarely able to just appreciate the current moment.

If guided meditations work at all for you then you should absolutely 100% check out the link in my second post to Bert Salzman's Mindcalming Sessions. They are relatively quick but so effective and you can do them from where you are sitting right now (probably). One of them is specifically called "Slow Down", and they all relate to what you're talking about.

Edit: I should add that B.W. Salzman kind of seems like he just jumped out of a meme, but he grows on you.
edit on 2014-04-16T16:44:31-05:002014310444kWedAmerica/ChicagobWed, 16 Apr 2014 16:44:31 -0500 by cosmikDebris because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 04:48 PM
I was at this alcohol rehab place one time and they talked about meditation. It wasnt sitting up like that but lying down and what they called diaphragmatic breathing.

Just lying back and breathing in for like 7 seconds and exhaling.

They started by everybody taking their temp. at their fingertip, between the thumb and a finger, after IDK 10 minutes everybodys temp was down. They said the higher temp was indicative of high stress?

Seemed to work.

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 04:51 PM
I like this. I have been trying to meditate for a couple of months now and every time I feel like I am not able to calm my mind. Sometimes, the most random things come to my mind and I actually think "what was that?" and then it ends. lol

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 04:54 PM
Every day before going to bed, I meditate for at least 20 minutes. At first couple of times it was hard not to think about anything, or to clear your mind of all thoughts if you wish, but after a while, I found it easier and easier to do it. Aside from becoming more relaxed you also become more present to the moment. And like the OP said, you can deal better with stuff that happens in your life, because it's like you are in a deeper consciousness. I can't really explain it, because I'm no expert in these kind of things, but it really helps.

My 2 cents.
edit on 16-4-2014 by Nikola014 because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 05:57 PM
reply to post by Nikola014

It definitely improves or expands your consciousness. I think that stress is the most under-acknowledged poison known to mankind, and meditation is an antidote. I know that when I experience trauma, sadness, or anger it only takes 20 minutes of meditation to kind of "reboot" emotionally (like going to sleep angry and waking up less so) and it also gives me more insight into how to deal with those emotions.

There's a good, short article written by a doctor here - Stress: The Silent Killer.

Emotions and attitudes are certainly contagious too; an individual isn't the only person who benefits from their own personal happiness and well-being.

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 08:03 PM
Wonderful thread! Very well written, and informative!
Thank you for the work you put into your presentation!

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 08:46 PM
Thank you so much! One of my goals this year is to really get into meditating! This will come very handy!

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 09:07 PM

Thank you so much! One of my goals this year is to really get into meditating! This will come very handy!
Spring/early summer is a great time to start! Meditating outdoors (coming from someone who practically lives in the woods) really puts you in tune with the Earth. I know there is debate regarding the effects of the planet's resonance, but you can't deny the peaceful hum of nature - flora and fauna coming together in song - is just plain goodness for the soul.

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 09:28 PM
Thankyou SO much for posting this!!! I have been trying to meditate for awhile now but have been finding it really hard, im a person that is constantly thinking and analyzing stuff so i had found it hard to stop that mental chatter, theres alot of info you have posted that i have been trying to find thats put in a easy to understand way like this. Thanks again ill let you know how i go after absorbing all the info.

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 10:29 PM
What a fantastic post- thank you!
This is the kind of stuff I love, the kind of stuff that eventually led me to ATS years and years ago (as well as Aliens etc lol)

Either way- thanks again!

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 11:23 PM
reply to post by cosmikDebris

SF for you

may I pose a question?

How do you generally slow down your mind enough to meditate in the first place? I feel like once I sit my mind is bouncing around like a superball in a popcorn maker

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 11:27 PM
reply to post by Shana91aus

I first came to ATS after Google searching something related to philosophy, which is what I studied in college. I quickly began using it as a "healthy alternative" to mainstream media, and it is now a source I use for everything related to science and ancient history. I'm not here to advertise this website, but there isn't much that you can't unearth via the search button. Thank you for your compliment!

edit on 2014-04-16T23:32:11-05:002014110432kWedAmerica/ChicagobWed, 16 Apr 2014 23:32:11 -0500 by cosmikDebris because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 16 2014 @ 11:41 PM
reply to post by cosmikDebris

Thanks! Saving for later

posted on Apr, 19 2014 @ 01:05 PM

originally posted by: KyoZero
reply to post by cosmikDebris

How do you generally slow down your mind enough to meditate in the first place? I feel like once I sit my mind is bouncing around like a superball in a popcorn maker

I personally don't look at slowing down my mind as a process separate from meditation. You could say meditation is the process of slowing your mind. When I meditate for 30 minutes, for example, the first 15 minutes are spent running through a few practices to "slow down" - I focus all of my attention on my breath. I count (in my head) to four with each inhale, hold my breath for three, and exhale while I count to five. When a thought arises, I imagine that thought blowing away when I exhale. So it takes several minutes of focus, objectively observing yourself, to calm the mind, and the rest of the time is spent quietly in that state of mental, physical, and emotional easiness.

This is part of why meditating in the morning seems to be, for me, much more effective. Your mind isn't full of a day's worth of information to process - and afterword you can face the day with a calm, focused mind.

Everybody's different, this is just my experience.

posted on Apr, 20 2014 @ 08:10 AM
Excellent OP. You have a gift of relaying this type of information in a way that can be understood by everyone.

posted on Dec, 9 2014 @ 05:15 AM
Thank you

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