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Block 4: Meditation

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Zen is not some kind of excitement, but concentration on our usual everyday routine.

Shunryu Suzuki

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Meditation

In the last block you meditate, after doing a body scan:

Open with Bamboo
1. Body scan
2. Silent Meditation
3. Mini meditation: STOP
4. Meditation for Relaxation
5. The bell of mindfulness
6. Reiki exercise new
Closing, and bow for the now

'Learning' to meditate is the most beautiful gift you can give to yourself in this life. By meditating you discover your true nature, and thus find the balance and trust to live well and die well. Meditating regularly is the road to peace, awareness and new insight. In the silence of meditation you catch a glimpse of being.

Jon Kabat-Zinn:
"It is a commonly held view that meditation is a way to shut off the pressures of the world or of your own mind, but this is not an accurate impression. Meditation is neither shutting things out nor off. It is seeing clearly and deliberately positioning yourself differently in relationship to them.“

Tips:

  • Be aware of your experiences (like falling asleep), without judging yourself
  • Be open en curious, and let go of your expectations
  • The perfect life is a myth, peace of mind doesn't lie in the circumstances, but in how you respond to them
  • You are not your thoughts or feelings
  • Discomfort will work itself out with time
  • We can go faster by slowing down more frequently
  • As beginner start off slowly (10 to 15 minutes), just do it!
  • Sit and half smile

Idioms:
dhyani mudrado (one's) heart good, in (one's) heart of hearts, all ears, all eyes and ears, follow one's nose.

Humour:
"If you hear yourself snoring you meditate too deeply."

The Meditation poster: download

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What is meditation

Meditation is a method for synchronizing body and mind in the present moment. Then we are naturally relaxed, alert, open, and aware, without conceptual filters.
Meditation is ... simply being.

"Resting in the natural state”
“Resting in the presence of God“
"The Buddhists call mindfulness — ongoing attention
to whatever arises moment to moment."

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Why meditate

  • To make friends with yourself and connect more deeply with others
  • Chronic dissatisfaction with life
  • Recommendation from a doctor, friend
  • Anxiety and other challenging emotions
  • Physical pain
  • Seeing how meditation helped others
  • Addiction
  • Past spiritual experience
  • Fears of mortality
  • Desire to experience God
  • Digesting & processing what we go through day-to-day

Deepak Chopra:
"Meditation is not a way of making your mind quiet. It's a way of entering into the quiet that's already there, buried under the 50,000 thoughts the average person thinks every day.“

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How to meditate

  • Find a quiet place, or
  • Wherever you happen to be, whenever
  • Remain easy, soft, and relaxed
  • Sit and return to bamboo posture
  • Begin observing (slower/deeper) breath
  • Explore the space between the breaths & thoughts
  • Maybe eyes closed, incense or music
  • Make a sustained effort
  • Apply mindfulness continuously ;-)
  • Let conversations, body sensations, sounds be in the background: acknowledge them
  • Gently return to your breathing home base

Benefits of meditation

  • Relaxing with uncertainty, stay centered in the midst of change
  • Awake to the laws of life
  • Non-judgmental awareness
  • Mindful listening and careful attention to our environment, to our bodies, to our minds, and to our hearts: mindfulness
  • Feel relaxed, centered, grounded, confident, peaceful, calm, at ease, delighted, open, focused, concentration power, and connected to your body
  • Reduced tension, anxiety, and stress
  • Clearer thinking and less emotional reactivity and dramatic mood swings
  • Lower blood pressure and cholesterol
  • Muscle relaxation
  • Reduction in the intensity of pain
  • Support in overcoming addictions/self-defeating behaviors
  • Greater creativity and better performance
  • Increased understanding and acceptance
  • More joy, love, intimacy, and spontaneity
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Bamboo

Close your eyes (if comfortable for you), focus on abdominal (belly) breathing, stand or sit relaxed, feet grounded, be like bamboo, go to the silence within, crown of your head to the heavens, tailbone to the earth, straighten your spine, relax your face and jaws, soft, hands on Dantian.

3

min

3

min

Be like Bamboo
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1. Body scan

Connect with and explore your body step by step, by bringing Goto your Treasuryyour awareness to it, with soft and loving attention. A guided meditation and journey, with the emphasis on observing.
Observe what is, nothing has to be changed: thoughts, feelings, pain, relaxation, judgements. Just let it be. You can worry a lot about your body, while not being connected with it. Learn to know your body by being aware of all of it's parts and the whole.
Discover what is already here and now.
Do the exercise regularly to improve your health (and after a while: try your own version, without audio!). Best is to stay awake throughout the duration of the body scan (but if you fall asleep that's fine too). You can reach deep physical and mental relaxation.
Find a safe and quiet place, comfortably dressed, see the invested time as quality time. Give yourself some positive attention. Don't try to hard. Allow everything to be exactly as it is now.
You can lay down on your back, under a blanket if you like, allow yourself to use whatever position is comfortable for you.

13

min

Listen to the Body scan:

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Bodyscan
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2. Silent Meditation

Take a few deep breaths, close your eyes if you like, and relax your Goto your Treasurybody as much as you can.
Breath naturally. Focus with your awareness lightly on the out breath. Each time you breathe out, there is a natural gap. Rest in that open space.
Don't concentrate to much on breathing.
If you start feeling tensed you can bring your attention relaxingly to a an object (a flower, crystal, statue or image of Buddha, God).
You can also recite a mantra (that what protects the mind ... against ordinary perception).
Keep your back straight and relaxed, bamboo. Whatever you see or hear, let it be as it is. Have a break when you experience to much tension.
Consider doing a short body scan, to let go of tension.
Let sensations, thoughts, emotions and feelings come and go. Do not hold on to them, don't feed them, and don't get carried away. You will soon notice that thoughts are like the wind: they come and go.

A Tibetan mantra:
"Om Mani Padme Hum"  ཨོཾ་མ་ཎི་པ་དྨེ་ཧཱུྃ།
(translation: ‘Hail the jewel in the lotus’).

20

min

Meditation preparation

You can meditate: sitting, standing, walking or lying down, any position that you can relax in.
Use incense, change lightning, use candle(s) if you like.
Find a quiet place where you can sit comfortably.
Consider My Tingshastarting and closing the meditation using a little bell sound (like from a Tingsha).
Structure the meditation (where, when, how long). The length of 20 minutes, for example twice a day, is a suggestion (any fixed period of time is fine). Starting with a 5 minute meditation to get used.
Establish a formal practice schedule.

To sit or not to sit"To sit or not to sit"

Listen to the Tingsha:

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sit comfortably
any position that you can relax in ...

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3. Mini meditation: STOP

In the midst of doing, stop for 60 seconds, stop Goto your Treasurymoving, stop talking, stop doing, and feel.
Become present.
Being.
The doorway to sanity is in this very moment, right now.

1

min

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4. Meditation for Relaxation

Relax on each out-breathe:
Bring your awareness to Goto your Treasurythe right half of your body while breathing in and out,
The left half,
The front half of your torso, then the whole front, from head to toe,
The back half of your torso,
Your whole torso: right, left, front, back,
Relaxation in all 6 directions on each out-breathe.

4

min

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5. The bell of mindfulness

Listen to the bell of mindfulness, by mousing over Panda, or listen here:

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Goto your Treasury.

Thich Nhat Hanh:
"Use the recurring sounds of your environment to gently remind you to wake up and be mindful.“

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6. Reiki exercise

Sit still and in silence every morning and every evening with Goto your Treasuryyour hands folded in the Gassho or Namaste, with the palms touching each other. Close your eyes, and focus on the point where your middle fingers are touching. Follow the Reiki (universal life energy) principles:

  • Today, don’t get angry.
  • Don’t worry.
  • Be grateful.
  • Endeavor your work.
  • Be kind to people.

and be clean and quiet. Work on your heart and do things from the quiet space inside of you.

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Namaste

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Closing

Be like bamboo, and observe: let go of sensations, thoughts, feelings and emotions, be in the now.

qiBring together Yin (your open left hand) en Yang (the fist of your right hand), and bow for the now.

nextCompliment yourself

Give yourself a big compliment!

And keep practicing. Small changes make the difference!
Regularly, during day-to-day life and business!

Sit and half smile

smile

The eMindfulness Workshop is free.
Support further development (exercises and information) of the eWorkshop with for example 5 euro, more is welcome too! Payment is done be using a secure iDeal or PayPal connection.

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