There are numerous methods of meditation. The meditative mind develops over time and practice. As a beginner, patience is key in developing consistency, commitment and calmness. Many find a meditative practice much easier through the collective support of a group class.
The Basics of Meditation
Meditation is a means of transforming the mind through techniques that encourage and develop concentration, clarity, and emotional well-being. By engaging in a particular meditation practice one may learn the patterns and habits of the mind. The practice offers a means to cultivate new, more positive ways of being. With regular work and patience these nourishing, focused states of mind can deepen into profoundly peaceful and energised states of clarity and concentration. Such experiences can have a transformative effect and can lead to a new understanding of life with new-found joy.
Kundalini Meditation for Beginners
This meditation includes a posture (body position), specific breath inhalation and exhalation, a gaze (focused eye movements or stillness) and Mantra (sacred vibrations).
Sit in any comfortable posture with the spine in a straight line. Place the hands on the lap, palms upward with the right hand over the left had. The thumbs are together and point forward.
Focus the eyes on the tip off the nose, the eyelids 9/10 closed
Meditation Breath and Mantra:
Inhale while mentally vibrating the mantra or sound “Sa Ta Na Ma” vibrating the mantra four times for a total of 16 beats. Hold the breath then Exhale in 2 equal strokes projecting mentally wahe guru. This meditation may be practiced from 15 up to 62 minutes
Taught by Yogi Bhajan on April 1, 1974 – The Teachings of Yogi Bhajan
What is the Meaning of Sa Ta Na Ma?
SA is the beginning, infinity, the totality of everything that ever was, is or will be.
TA is life, existence and creativity that manifests from infinity.
NA is death, change and the transformation of consciousness.
MA is rebirth, regeneration and resurrection which allows us to consciously experience the joy of the infinite.
SA TA NA MA is so primal that its impact on our psyche is like splitting an atom. The power of his mantra comes from the fact that it rearranges the subconscious mind at the most elementary level. It has the power to break habits and addictions because it accesses the level of the mind where habits are created.
Mindful Meditation is a form of meditation designed to develop the skill of paying attention to our inner and outer experiences with acceptance, patience, and compassion. Today, millions of people are committed to transforming their lives and relationships through mindful meditation. Scientists, social and medical studies are confirming the benefits of mindful meditation including:
Reduction of stress and related illnesses — The practice enables the practitioner to be more calm and serene, reducing the risk of stress-related illnesses.
Slows the aging process — People who meditate tend to look and feel much younger than their actual age.
Improvements in relationships — As one becomes more loving and peaceful, relationships naturally improve
The University of California Center for Mindfulness, part of the medical school’s psychiatry department, defines Mindfulness Meditation this way
“(Mindfulness) is a quality, which human beings already have, but they have usually not been advised that they have, that it is valuable, or that it can be cultivated. Mindfulness is the awareness that is not thinking but which is aware of thinking, as well as aware of each of the other ways we experience the sensory world, i.e., seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling, feeling through the body. “Mindfulness is non-judgmental, open-hearted, friendly, and inviting of whatever arises in awareness. It is cultivated by paying attention on purpose, deeply, and without judgment to whatever arises in the present moment, either inside or outside of us. By Intentionally practicing mindfulness, deliberately paying more careful moment-to-moment attention, individuals can live more fully and less on ‘automatic pilot,’ thus, being more present for their own lives.”
Nidra means Yogic Sleep. It is a state of conscious Deep Sleep. In Meditation, one remains in the Waking state of consciousness, and gently focuses the mind, while allowing thought patterns, emotions, sensations, and images to arise and go on. In Yoga Nidra, one leaves the Waking state, go past the Dreaming state, and go to Deep Sleep, yet remain awake. While Yoga Nidra is a state that is very relaxing, it is also used to purify the deep impressions that are the driving force behind everyday patterns and habits.