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Can we talk about meditation and relaxation?  This thread currently has 2,529 views. Print Print Thread
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Victoria
Thursday, October 2, 2008, 9:03pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Sun Beh Nim
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Music draws me outside, and when I meditate, I like to hold my attention inside.



Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are.
Let me not pass you by in quest
of some rare and perfect tomorrow.
~Mary Jean Irion
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Amazone I.
Friday, October 3, 2008, 7:02am Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Kyosha Nim
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I also do need my complete calm....


MIfHI K-174
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Gumby
Friday, October 3, 2008, 2:33pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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I like quiet for meditation too.  Love music, but not during that time.  

I've been to a meditation/chanting group where we chant for 20 min, have silent meditation for 20 min, then do a chant for 20, then silent meditation again.  I did enjoy that group, doing the same chant for 20 min was great and then the silence inside and out after that was so nice...made it really easy to go deep quickly.  We'd usually choose one chant that was pretty deep and powerful, and one that was a bit easier and lighter...two totally different meditation experiences followed each which was cool.


Embracing my A-ness! (Ok, that is waaaay better in print than it is out loud! )

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Victoria
Friday, October 3, 2008, 3:18pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Sun Beh Nim
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Chanting is different than music, for my meditation experience.  Chanting puts me into meditation, but then I like silence during.

Music can take me away from myself, which makes it hard to stay present.



Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are.
Let me not pass you by in quest
of some rare and perfect tomorrow.
~Mary Jean Irion
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Mayflowers
Friday, October 3, 2008, 4:18pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator
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When I use the brother charles cd, it has chanting om mani padme hume in the form of singing, but when I don't use it I don't play music. It should be quiet like Kristen says.
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Chloe
Friday, October 3, 2008, 4:19pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Kyosha Nim
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Quoted from Victoria
Chanting is different than music, for my meditation experience.  Chanting puts me into meditation, but then I like silence during.

Music can take me away from myself, which makes it hard to stay present.



I have some old tapes that are specifically designed for meditation...there is no tune you
can latch onto or  process in your brain like songs you might listen to for enjoyment.  I have the
perpetual OM sound on tape..If I play it quietly I can't even notice it....What happened is that
I learned to meditate with a teacher-guide....I did this for years.  We would assemble in a group, bring mats and lie on the floor....Incense would burn and candles lit in corners
around the room. He'd even place crystals in a pattern in the middle of our circle....
But in the background would be a slight perception of music....so softly played, it sounded
angelic.  I guess for me, it was conditioning......I mostly don't listen to music when I meditate by myself, but the minute I listen to one of the tapes this teacher used to play, I'm halfway there into my meditative state almost immediately.




"The happiest people don't have the best of everything.....they know how to make the best of everything!"
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Ribbit
Friday, October 3, 2008, 5:08pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Kyosha Nim
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I've had some nights where I was so wound up I couldn't sleep.  I just concentrate on breathing deeply and stopping thoughts from coming into my  head.  Within a few minutes I'll be asleep.  Is that meditation?

I shy away from such things, to be honest, because it sounds so new-age to me, and I'm not at all new-age.  But if I can relax without getting creepy and cultic, maybe it'll benefit me.

The closest thing I've ever come to being in a trance is during labor.  I'm not a noise-maker during labor.  I just do deep breathing.  With my first I kept having to mentally remove myself to be able to handle the pain.  With my second and third I learned to roll with the punches, so to speak, and sink down into the contractions instead of trying to remove myself from them.  My second and third births were amazing and invigorating.  I think what I was doing was a form of meditation or self-hypnosis.


ISTJ, BTD since 5/05.  Battling chronic Lyme disease since ~1985.

"Everything is permissible for me, but not everything is beneficial..."  I Corinthians 6:12

Family: 3 As, 1 B, 1 AB, 1 O
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Chloe
Friday, October 3, 2008, 6:04pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Kyosha Nim
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Quoted from Ribbit
I've had some nights where I was so wound up I couldn't sleep.  I just concentrate on breathing deeply and stopping thoughts from coming into my  head.  Within a few minutes I'll be asleep.  Is that meditation?

I shy away from such things, to be honest, because it sounds so new-age to me, and I'm not at all new-age.  But if I can relax without getting creepy and cultic, maybe it'll benefit me.

The closest thing I've ever come to being in a trance is during labor.  I'm not a noise-maker during labor.  I just do deep breathing.  With my first I kept having to mentally remove myself to be able to handle the pain.  With my second and third I learned to roll with the punches, so to speak, and sink down into the contractions instead of trying to remove myself from them.  My second and third births were amazing and invigorating.  I think what I was doing was a form of meditation or self-hypnosis.


Here's some information about the history of meditation.  It's rather old!

The Long History of Meditation Is Evidence of Its Benefits
The numerous traditions and practices associated with the various forms of meditation have been intriguing and beneficial to people of all nations for centuries.
Meditation is both an ancient spiritual practice and a contemporary mind-body technique for relaxing the body and calming the mind. Although there is not a lot of recorded information dealing with the history of meditation, its roots can be traced back to ancient times. Researchers speculate that even primitive societies may have discovered altered states of consciousness and meditative states while staring into the flames of their campfires.

According to archaeologists, a figure of a yogi found in the Indus Valley Civilization demonstrates that yoga practice could have existed in the first Indian civilization itself. Since civilized societies began to emerge, meditation has evolved into a structured practice. Until recently, the primary purpose of meditation has been for religious reasons, although the health benefits of meditation have long been recognized in cultures where methods of meditation originated.

5000-year old Indian scriptures called tantras mentioned various techniques of meditation. The Buddha, the worlds most iconic meditation scholars, first made his mark around 500 B.C. Before achieving his enlightenment as a Buddha, he was known as Siddhartha Gotama, and what actually led him to the Buddhahood was his own experimentation in meditation. Siddhartha mastered the techniques of meditation quickly. He developed jhaanas and supranormal skills based on his experiences, developing a practice known as samatha. These skills allow one to calm down inner thoughts and cultivate the power of concentration. This new type of meditation was known as vipassanaa, which means the ability to see the nature of life and the world through meditation. By employing techniques of vipassanaa, one can attain Nirvana, which is the goal of Buddhist meditation.

Buddha taught his disciples and those disciples taught their own, spreading the Buddhas teachings far and wide across the Asian continent. From master to master, new interpretations and approaches were added. When Buddhism reached China, Japan, Tibet, and southeastern Asian countries, each region added their own interpretations and developed their own unique way of practicing meditation methods.

Similar to the Buddhists, who are led by the teachings of the Buddha, the Sufis of Islam claim that their techniques of meditation began when their religion began, with the practices of the Prophet Mohammed. Forms of meditation have been present for centuries in numerous other religions, including Judaism, Christianity, and Jainism, but they are not so widely practiced as the Middle Eastern and Asian techniques.

Meditation spread to Western society thousands of years after it had already become firmly rooted in Eastern cultures. Its widespread popularity in the United States didnt begin until the mid-20th century. In the 1960s and 1970s, many college professors and scientific researchers began to test the effects of meditation and learned about the multitude of benefits it affords to physical, mental, and emotional health.

Meditation is the first mind-body intervention to be widely adopted in mainstream health care in Western society and around the world. Various techniques of meditation are now widely taught in medical settings such as VA clinics and hospitals. Meditation is often prescribed as a healing technique for relaxing the body and calming the mind, as it has done since the beginning of recorded history.




"The happiest people don't have the best of everything.....they know how to make the best of everything!"
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TJ
Friday, October 3, 2008, 6:23pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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So the objective of meditation is to become aware: aware of what's going on in mind and in body.  All these practices are just different ways of getting to that state of awareness, right?
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jayneeo
Friday, October 3, 2008, 6:38pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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thank you ,chloe. that is a beautiful history.
Drive, there are many "objectives" of meditation, including the one you mention.
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C_Sharp
Friday, October 3, 2008, 7:15pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Sa Bon Nim
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Quoted from Ribbit
I shy away from such things, to be honest, because it sounds so new-age to me, and I'm not at all new-age.  But if I can relax without getting creepy and cultic


Meditation is found within the Christian tradition as well as a variety of other traditions (as noted by Chloe above).

Some Christian known for their meditative practices:

Brother Lawrence
Julian of Norwich
St. John of the Cross
St. Ignatius of Loyola
St. Teresa of Avila
Madame Guyon
John Main, O.S.B

Here is the scriptural imperative to meditate:

Quoted from Psalm 1:2
His delight is in the law of the Lord, and in his law he meditates day and night


Quoted from Joshua 1:8
God commands his people to meditate on his word day and night to instill obedience.


So one way to meditate within in the Christian tradition is known as passage meditation.

In passage meditation one starts by being quiet and stilling the mind from the distraction of the day. Then one brings to mind a short passage of scripture that one has memorized.  You may repeat the whole passage to yourself. Then allow yourself to focus on a single verse or phrase. Hold your attention on this phrase and see what happens. Spend several minutes meditating (or contemplating if you prefer this word) on a phrase before moving to the next phrase in the passage.

Relax you do not race through the passage. It is not race! Allow God time to speak to you and reveal to your soul the secrets hidden in the passage.


Another approach Christians use is to focus on a well known prayers. The Prayer of St Francis is a popular prayer to use for meditation. You may choose to concentrate on one phrase for a daily meditation session or slowly advance through the prayer spending a couple minutes on each phrase in the prayer.

Quoted from St. Francis

    Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace;
    where there is hatred, let me sow love;
    where there is injury, pardon;
    where there is doubt, faith;
    where there is despair, hope;
    where there is darkness, light;
    and where there is sadness, joy.

    O Divine Master,
    grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
    to be understood, as to understand;
    to be loved, as to love;
    for it is in giving that we receive,
    it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
    and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.

    Amen.


MIfHI                            I follow a SWAMI diet.
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Lola
Saturday, October 4, 2008, 12:57am Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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has anyone seen a person levitate?
is that some form of superlative meditation?

and I don t mean David K. here!


''Just follow the book, don't look for magic fixes to get you off the hook. Do the work.'' Dr.D.'98
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The harder you are on yourself, the easier life will be on you!
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TJ
Saturday, October 4, 2008, 2:11pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Kyosha Nim
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Yep.  He was wearing a jetpack.
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Raquel
Saturday, October 4, 2008, 4:04pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Kyosha Nim
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Quoted from Lola
has anyone seen a person levitate?
is that some form of superlative meditation?

and I don t mean David K. here!

My brother.
He has meditation since 30 years ago with meditation trascendental TM Maharishi Yogui.



Teacher's motto, "all you need is love".
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Lola
Saturday, October 4, 2008, 4:17pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Sa Bon Nim
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''Just follow the book, don't look for magic fixes to get you off the hook. Do the work.'' Dr.D.'98
DNA mt/Haplo H; Y-chrom/J2(M172);ISTJ
The harder you are on yourself, the easier life will be on you!

Revision History (1 edits)
Lola  -  Saturday, October 4, 2008, 5:12pm
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Raquel
Sunday, October 5, 2008, 11:19am Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Kyosha Nim
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Great Lola, you are a Encyclopedia online!!!!

He taught me TM, it was my first experience of meditation...


Teacher's motto, "all you need is love".
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Amazone I.
Sunday, October 5, 2008, 12:19pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Kyosha Nim
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good stuff Lola and Raquel ....I wanna fly as well ............


MIfHI K-174
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Mayflowers
Sunday, October 5, 2008, 3:40pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Ribbit
I've had some nights where I was so wound up I couldn't sleep.  I just concentrate on breathing deeply and stopping thoughts from coming into my  head.  Within a few minutes I'll be asleep.  Is that meditation?


Yes. It's meditation. There's nothing evil about concentrating on your breath going in and out. Most all nations had their own form of meditation.

I find it amusing that the old ways, and old religions are being referred to as "New Age".  Christianity is btw, the newest religion. It's only been around for about 2,000 years.

I also practice TM, but the organization that teaches it is getting too greedy and I refuse to pay for any more "advanced techniques" I can get them on the internet from disgruntled members..
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Victoria
Sunday, October 5, 2008, 4:49pm Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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I think of meditation as any practice that helps me stay in the present moment.  For several decades, I practiced a sitting meditation, using silent mantra repetition, with each in-breath and with each out-breath.  It has the effect of anchoring a person's attention to the here and now, and keeps you from getting drawn off (and lost) in the thoughts.  Every time we think, we are either projecting ourselves into the future or into the past.

Due to old and repetitive left knee injuries, I no longer sit cross legged for meditation, but still use the basic approach of staying aware of my in and out breaths.  I lie flat on my back without a pillow for a few minutes before going to sleep and as soon as I wake up.  I also use this practice whenever I am doing work that does not require talking.

I don't consider sleep itself to be meditation because we are no longer conscious in present time.  Sleep is letting go and slipping into dreamland.  Cultivating the ability to hold the mind steady develops a high degree of mental strength and ability to concentrate.  Although I do like to meditate before sleeping.  I try to be in a position that I would not normally sleep in, to prevent the automatic
snooze button.

I don't see the goal of meditation as making the mind a blank screen either.  For me, it requires exercise, much as I work my muscles.  Every time the mind drifts off into thinking, I bring it back to my gentle breathing.  Gradually I can hold the focus for longer and longer periods.  The result is deep relaxation and a higher level of contentment.  When the thoughts come, my intention is to observe them and not allow them to hook me in and pull me out of the moment.



Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are.
Let me not pass you by in quest
of some rare and perfect tomorrow.
~Mary Jean Irion
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Ribbit
Monday, October 6, 2008, 1:37am Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Quoted from 815



I find it amusing that the old ways, and old religions are being referred to as "New Age".  


New Age isn't new at all, it's just what it's called.  They are very old ways, just like you said.


ISTJ, BTD since 5/05.  Battling chronic Lyme disease since ~1985.

"Everything is permissible for me, but not everything is beneficial..."  I Corinthians 6:12

Family: 3 As, 1 B, 1 AB, 1 O
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Mayflowers
Monday, October 6, 2008, 2:26am Report to Moderator Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Victoria

Due to old and repetitive left knee injuries, I no longer sit cross legged for meditation, but still use the basic approach of staying aware of my in and out breaths.  


The only reason yogis sat cross legged on the floor was because they were very poor and didn't have furniture. My ex told me that. If it were common for Indians to have furniture, we'd all be taught to meditate sitting in a chair..

Quoted Text
New Age isn't new at all, it's just what it's called.  They are very old ways, just like you said.


Yes, so old, much was forgotten. Now that it's being discovered again, it's considered "new", hence New Age.
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Mayflowers
Monday, October 6, 2008, 2:30am Report to Moderator Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Lola
has anyone seen a person levitate?
is that some form of superlative meditation?

and I don t mean David K. here!


David Blaine and Chris Angel can levitate    BTW, who's David K?
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jayneeo
Monday, October 6, 2008, 3:05am Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Kyosha Nim
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aren't they really bouncing (not to rain on any parades, but I've heard that...)

....Oh! (just checked out Lola's link!!!).....hmmmm. Too bad, cuz TM has done a lot of good in this world.
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Lola
Monday, October 6, 2008, 3:10am Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Sa Bon Nim
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David Kopperfield....


''Just follow the book, don't look for magic fixes to get you off the hook. Do the work.'' Dr.D.'98
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Raquel
Monday, October 6, 2008, 11:35am Report to Moderator Report to Moderator

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Kyosha Nim
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Teacher's motto, "all you need is love".
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