Meditation and Prayer are joined hand-n-hand!
By Dr. Sharon R. Bonds
When we are born we identify ourselves with our five senses. Our parents, family and friends constantly reinforce that you look like your mother, father or both. We grow up hearing stories about facial features, hair and complexion. In short, what I’m attempting to say is this: “We are reinforced constantly that we are our bodies.” Your identity is connected to this physical imprint (body). When you look into the mirror and think that the reflection is who you are….but it’s not you, but rather the capsule that houses you and the reality is that you are not your body! We are something else much more expansive and vass than the body. We are actually the expression of the creator, the universal mind energy along with light and it is this energy that creates our thoughts, words, emotions and actions. Since you can think about your thoughts, you are not your thoughts. Since you can analyze your emotions, you are not your emotions. Since you can observe and analyze your body, you cannot be your body.
Your body or bodies in general are not capable of doing anything on its own!
In fact in order for these bodies to work it must be connected to you spiritually and that spiritual connection with the physical connection of your body or the body doesn’t work. During the course of our lives, the body will age and eventually die. You will not because you are not the body. This body is only the vehicle that transports us as we journey into, as well we throughout life’s various stages of development. Please know that everything in this physical world is created first out of mental energy. When you think you are unhappy, you are! Thoughts are things and thoughts create, so be careful what you think because you will create that for yourself. Your mind can imprison you; it can make you think that you are a girl when you are a boy biologically. Some people believe that we are all the negative thoughts that frustrate and control us, but we are not, aren’t you glad! We live in a sea of thought forms encasing the planet, many of which are not the highest good. Thought forms have a tendency to gravitate to us, depending on your mood and what we attract to us based on our deeds. We are like light houses sitting by the sea navigating thought forms to us based on our signal, which are our thought patterns we put out, that’s what we bring into our life, as well as experiences that we create in our lives through our subconscious and conscience thoughts you draw these experiences to you while you create your life. We possess the free will to act on them or to let them float away…choose your thoughts wisely or you can be your own worst enemy. In short the thoughts we choose to own or accept exist as the original creative force that guides your path.
Once we realize that you are not your thoughts and emotions, we can begin to control them. It’s simple but rather complex because we do this by choosing to think or feel otherwise. Whenever you don’t like how you feel, you should choose to experience something else by changing your thoughts.
It’s difficult for most of us to break from the illusion of who we think we are, especially when our five senses are alive and functioning so well. There is a way to do so, however that way is through meditation. By meditating you become more aware of all that is not the body and all that is pure consciousness. Meditation leads us to discover who we really are, while the stillness speaks to you.
Meditation is deep and continuous thoughts that allows us to travel inward to reflect on sacred matters. The very act of meditation can cause our brain waves to slow down to such a degree that we are able to use more of our mind. This action, once achieved, it allows us to reflect on the inner aspects of the mind. Deeper meditations connect us to the spark of the divine and the light within. Once this has been accomplished and the connection to the higher self has been made, you are assured of living a harmonious, abundant, loving life if we follow the guidance emanating from within ourselves.
Why should you meditate?
Meditation assists you to find bliss, inner harmony and centerness. It is the only way to find the peace within and to connect to it so that you can live it. Lasting peace never can be found or experienced outside of oneself! It is found when we learn to control our mental and emotional bodies and stay centered within. Meditation provided the tools and teaches us how to master this state of mind and once you do, you discover who you really are. Meditation is the path of all the wise sages who have journeyed before us, and it will continue to be the road to freedom for many more in the years to come.
Learn to be silent! Let your mind listen and absorb!
Proper breathing especially during meditation is critical. Breathing is life itself and is an essential connection to health. Look around the evidence of this statement is shown in the number of people with poor posture and caved in chest and those that are contracting diseases in the respiratory areas. If we could develop only one generation of children who breathe correctly, disease could almost be eliminated. The breath is the all! It is thought breath that we connect to prana, which is the life force energy that feeds the soul. Breath is the nutrition line emanating from the higher self that provides the essential ingredients all layers of body to function in unison, in other words the breath is absolute energy that’s utilized by the soul for all manifestations. When you store “prana” successfully, either deliberately or subconsciously radiate a vitality and power that’s experience by everyone that’s in your presence. It is “prana” that heals through the hands and auric fields. It is prana the force field of energy that will continue to build in the individual who consciously journey to the light and who eventually will create heaven on earth!
How should we meditate?
We are what we eat! What we eat will determine what we think. Therefore, do not meditate within two hours of eating. Fasting is a well-known way to enhance the meditative state. The process of meditation is enhanced if you sit with your spine straight. Breathe deeply and rhythmically, inhaling through your nose, while your chest and solar plexus both expand. Breathe in fresh air, if possible. Slowly let the air out of your mouth, keeping your chest firmly in place and pushing up gently from your solar plexus. Try to exhale all the old, stale air. Never inhale through your mouth. Humans are the only animals who sometimes breathe through their mouths, which is one of the causes of disease. This is because the mouth provides no protection for the organs within. Hold the air within for a few seconds before exhaling. This might make you feel a little light-headed. Focus your attention on any part of your body that is holding tension, the neck, shoulders, face, legs, etc and release the tension into the universe. With your eyes closed, visualize a golden light within your head. See it slowly expand and fill your entire body with light. Try to hold your full concentration on the light, until you see every cell in your body filled with this frequency. Continue to breathe deeply.
Controlling the breath, and thus calming the nerves, is a prerequisite to controlling the mind and the body.
While visualizing the light within, allow all thoughts to pass through your mind. Hold your vision on the light. It is common for most people to experience thoughts that agitate the mind. If this happens, let the thoughts pass through like clouds passing across the sky and bring focus to the light. Let the thoughts pass, bless them, thank them for being there, and allow them to drift slowly away. Never judge or self-criticize because the challenge is to conquer the desires of the ego.
Each person must determine individually how long to meditate each day. Even as few as fifteen minutes each day will produce miracles in one’s life. Discipline is very important. If a meditation can be completed at the same time each day, greater effects often are experienced. The ultimate goal is to become a walking meditation every moment of the day.
What are the stages of meditation?
There are three stages of meditation which are concentration, contemplation, and true meditation.
Concentration requires discipline over our thoughts and actions. Staring at an object, wall or visualizations of a color for several seconds without blinking will enhance deep concentration, as will holding your thoughts still while focusing on the light. At this stage you must command your breathing, taking deep rhythmic breaths and inhaling the life force energy of the universe.
Contemplation requires the ability to focus internally. One of the greatest meditations that should be mastered is to see the light within emanating from every part of our body. When this can be accomplished successfully and the mind can hold this thought for an extended period of time, conscience will expand and this is the transforming power. By focusing your attention on the light, you draw to you all that you need, whether you understand it in the moment or not. An excellent mantra to say daily that will facilitate this is: “I AM THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD”
Meditation the last stage of true meditation is mastered when the one who is meditating no longer feels that he or she is doing it. In other words, when the person and the light merge and become one, then higher consciousness is experienced and understood.
Daily prayer is another extremely powerful way in which we can achieve harmony in our life. Prayer is a plea to God for a special favor, request or a means of giving thanks. Prayers can be formal or an on going dialogue with our creator. To put it simply the phase, “Thank You” is considered a prayer because you are giving thanks. Prayer is an active vital force in your life when you use it, because all prayers are answered…..it may not be the answer you want, but you will get an answer and that answer will be on time. Prayer is speaking to God and when you ask the request is granted, when you knock the door is open and when you seek the answers are found. This is the law of the universe.
Prayer is speaking to God while meditation is listening to God.
Since we spend so much time talking it is a good practice to learn to focus our thoughts and words into constant prayers. Focusing our energy will always assist us to bring divine harmony into our lives. Some people do not know how to pray. They think that a formal verse has to be spoken or a structured thought emitted. Not so! Not true! A smile with a song of gratitude in the heart is the best prayer of all and simply talking to the creator from your heart, confessing, and acknowledging pain, hurt, fears, transgressions and weaknesses is the prayer key that frees and clears your conscience. Learn to be in this state at all times and you will become a living prayer.
There is only one God and he is omnipresent.
There is only one religion, the religion of Love.
There is only one caste, the caste of humanity.
There is only one language, the language of the heart. Sai Baba
Living a life of truth, right speech, peace, harmony, love and non-violence fulfills the language of the heart. This is what we must learn to continue to grow, it’s ALL ABOUT LOVE!
This article is copyrighted.
Copyright © The Library of Congress 2011