As a continuation from the parent article titled, Dealing with Stress and Anxiety, comes Meditation Techniques.
Finally, we are in an era where meditation is accessible. We do not picture anymore a hippy or a student in their gap year, looking for enlightenment in some lost temple in the Himalayas... It is now accessible and easy if practiced regularly.
Well documented studies have catapulted meditation to the top rank of wellbeing tools by spiritual teachers and scientists.
Mindfulness, conscious breathing and being present in the here and now are techniques that can help into relaxation and facilitate meditative states of mind.
It is inevitable that your mind is going to wander, specially when under stress and when adjusting to something new. Once you get into the habit of coming back from those wandering thoughts to your centre and to observe your breathing, to sense all of your sensations, to enjoy stillness ... Then it becomes easier and natural.
We can practice Mindfulness when we walk, observe nature and when cooking at home and eating.
Or simply when just sitting or laying down in a comfortable position. If seated, keep the back and head comfortably straight, hands facing down on your lap for grounding (grounding as in therapeutical/spiritual terms meaning connection, awareness and full presence). Eyes closed and focusing on your breath, your body sensations and allowing yourself to sink into relaxation.
Once relaxation is achieved, we can apply further techniques to gain deeper and transformative states of mind.
For guided meditations the best option will be to form part of a meditation group. Choose a guide with a voice and work that inspires trust, calmness and professionalism.
Meditating into the sound of a musical instrument -a gong, for example- or the natural sounds of nature like the rain or the sea; and/or holding a healing crystal or an object like a silk scarf, that has a specific quality or pleasant memory, can help you to induce calmness instantly.
Mantra meditation or Chanting, is a type of practice that can enable us to get into a trance kind of state where there are no more thoughts, no more judgements. Just being.
The visualisation type of meditation -guided or not- is powerful in both easing the mind and healing. You can gain a very restorative experience from visualising. Take into consideration that you can choose from visualising with your physical eyes or with your inner vision.
You can also apply light and colour when visualising with your physical eyes, and focusing your sight into an object or centre point while meditating.
’Sun Gazing’ is an ancient practice of looking at the Sun in the early hours of the morning and meditating through it (this is safer with the eyes closed or semi closed - do not look directly at the sun unless you are a veteran in this ancient practice). In times of stress this is better at sunset than sunrise, or a ‘Moon Gazing’ one or two days after full moon.
If you have mobility issues or you do not have an easy access to a safe and quiet place to gaze at the stars when we feel most vulnerable, then lets get out some colours and paper to draw and paint a mandala or a sigil (light and deep blues, a violet with a warm shade, or green are great to use when stressed and anxious). You can add sacred geometry and symbols that make you feel protected and at ease. This will be great to use it as you focus your sight on it while meditating.
Tarot healing mediation with the Temperance XIV card for the moderation of the ‘emotional temperature’. This is something that I will explain further in future blogs more related to the healing power of Tarot.
When using the ‘Third Eye’ type of visualisation from your inner vision, it is best, first and foremost to be guided by a practitioner in this field.
This type of guided imagination is very powerful when applying all of your senses into it, for example: a guided visualisation having a walk at the sea shore of an untouched beach; the light that we see, how it feels on our skin, the smell of the sea, the sound of the waves against the rocks, the seaweeds ... you can even taste the salty breeze in your mouth by now. This type of visualisation is very powerful too in manifesting desires.
Other meditation types worth mentioning that are very helpful for healing are: Tonglen, where you practice compassion and Metta for positive energy and kindness, both for yourself and others.
See you in the next article!
Thank you for this wonderful article on meditation. I love to do Sun Gazing.