meditation for a beginner: question

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Eye angle

Postby heyjt » Sat Oct 15, 2005 3:44 am

I know there are many practices, <br> But my instruction suggests looking slightly low while meditating. The reason was looking up :<br>1. changes the skull angle, which should be chin slightly down. (according to Taoist practice) Also raises the crown of the head--<br>2. Looking up disperses the Chi from the individual, not allowing it to be captured in the body<br>3. it causes eyestrain and distracts from the meditation<br> -- just my thoughts from my practice.<br> Now, that doesn't mean I don't grasp the heavens and bring energy in from them, but for static meditation, I was instructed to look slightly down.... <p></p><i></i>
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Re: eye angle

Postby Telexx » Sat Oct 15, 2005 7:07 am

If you're practicing meditation, especially for relaxation purposes, I'd agree position your eyes however is comfortable for you.<br><br>If you're practicing autogenic hypnosis specifically to generate alpha waves then, for reasons still unknown, looking up at a 20 degree angle when your eyes are closed helps promote alpha wave activity in your brain.<br><br>Interestingly there was a study in Japan (Kasamatsu and Hirai, 1966 I think) of four Zen masters. They found that alpha waves were the predominant waves in the EEG records of the Zen masters even with their eyes open and when fully alert (something virtually impossible for most people). <br><br>It should be said though that learning how to generate alpha waves at will isn't the same as many years Zen training, because even though you can put your mind at that level, once you start thinking about maths or something complex/stressful other brain frequencies increase and the alpha wave state is lost, whereas the Zen masters were shown to be in this state no matter what was on their mind!<br><br>I have a friend who is an NLP practitioner. Through the course of her work she utilises various exercises to form new connections between left & right brain (the benefit to her clients being they lose associated feelings with traumatic events). I got her to try the alpha wave stuff (she is also a hypnotist and familiar with the theta level of brain activity) and she thinks when your brain is operating at the alpha wave frequencies you are using the right-hand side of your brain much more.<br><br>Probably those trained to a high level in Zen are using both sides of the brain in a balanced way - unlike the rest of us!! ;-)<br><br>If there can be such a thing as psychic development then using the creative side of your brain seems more logical than using the critical side of your brain (the fact that this seems logical perhaps qualifies it as oxymoronic?)<br><br>Developing your intuition (rigorous or otherwise) seems pertinent in these Strange Days and I'd wholeheartedly recommend any kind if inner exploration.<br><br>Take care,<br><br>Telexx<br><br><br><br><br> <p></p><i></i>
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Heyjt...

Postby banned » Sat Oct 15, 2005 5:37 pm

Yes, when I was taught how to "sit" I was told to let my chin come forward naturally--don't push it down, or try to sit up military straight--and to look ahead and slightly down with relaxed eyelids--not closed but not staring straight ahead either.<br><br>Easier to show someone than describe. It's basically the natural relaxed but alert posture. The reason Zen masters whack students with their stick is if they get too relaxed they fall asleep, and Roshi can see from their posture while standing behind them when that's happening. (In a Zen meditation hall the meditators sit back to the room facing the wall.)<br><br>Ah, here's a good description, there's more at the site including a nice photo of a meditation room--thank you American Zen College:<br><br><!--EZCODE AUTOLINK START--><a href="http://www.americanzencollege.org/intro/sitting.html">www.americanzencollege.or...tting.html</a><!--EZCODE AUTOLINK END--><br><br>"Sitting Instructions<br><br> * The spine is kept straight a a 90 degree angle to the floor.<br> * The head is held so that the nose in in a straight line with the navel and danjun (hara).<br> * The chin is tucked in slightly.<br> * The ears are in line with the shoulders.<br> * The arms are held slightly loose at the side, as if one were holding an egg underneath each armpit - not loose enough to drop them, but not close enough to break them, either.<br> * The hands are held below the navel, in front of the danjun, which is two inches straight down from the navel.<br> * The hands are held with the left hand on the right palm and the thumbs joined together in a circle. This is a mudra which symbolize the universe and the perfection of emptiness.<br> * The rear danjun is always pressed towards the front danjun to prevent bending of the spine.<br> * The eyes are half open, neither staring intently, which causes headache, nor completely shut, which can lead to daydreaming and drowsiness. The angle of vision is approximately 15 degrees in front of you, towards the floor.<br> * The teeth are held together, keeping the mouth closed so that all breathing takes place through the nose. The teeth join naturally as a result of the chin being held in.<br> * The tongue is held against the roof of the mouth to prevent saliva from filling up the mouth.<br>* The position of your body on the cushion is very important. The cushion should be neither too high nor too low and you should sit directly on the center of the cushion so that body weight is distributed evenly o the sitting bones.<br><br><snip><br><br>As much as possible, it is best to have an experienced person check your posture frequently in the beginning until you establish a good solid physical foundation for sitting." <p></p><i></i>
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zen + alpha waves + rightbrain

Postby nashvillebrook » Sat Oct 15, 2005 6:12 pm

i wonder if that "lost time," in-the-flow, right-brain thinking exhibits alpha waves. i bet some of my right-brain drawing books discuss this. i'll pull them out and see. <br><br>speaking of looking up and right-left brain stuff, there's an "instrument" -- like an IQ test, for right/left brain dominance and one of the questions is to notice which direction up you look when you are concentrating and trying to come up with an answer. thing is, i'm so dyslexic i'm confused as to which side meant what. there's a cross-over with the optical nerve and i can't make my brain be sure of which is which. bad brain. brain bad. <br><br>seriously tho -- the psychic stuff is fascinating. i have spooky premonitions. usually about mundane things -- someone's getting a haircut. but twice now i've awoken having very specific nightmares about a pet (we have italian greyhounds) and twice now they have been exactly what happened. one dream saved my two dogs (the dream was them escaping which is a no-no for coursing dogs...leathal) and one was "seeing" my dog, pass on as it was happening. odd, but, in the grand scheme of things, mundane. kinda gives me the willies about the nightmares i have about not so mundane things. <br><br> <p></p><i></i>
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Re: A Worthwhile Experience:

Postby slimmouse » Sat Oct 15, 2005 7:21 pm

<!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>Buddah teaches that "all is sorrow", for even that which gives us happiness will give way to longing and remorse once it is gone.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br> "If you can meet with triumph and disaster, and treat those two imposters both the same........you'll be a man my son.<br><br> If......Rudyard Kipling. One mindblowing peice of poetry;<br><br><!--EZCODE ITALIC START--><em> If you can keep your head when all about you<br>Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,<br>If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,<br>But make allowance for their doubting too;<br>If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,<br>Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,<br>Or being hated, don't give way to hating,<br>And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise:<br><br>If you can dream - and not make dreams your master,<br>If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim;<br>If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster<br>And treat those two impostors just the same;<br>If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken<br>Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,<br>Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,<br>And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools:<br><br>If you can make one heap of all your winnings<br>And risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss,<br>And lose, and start again at your beginnings<br>And never breath a word about your loss;<br>If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew<br>To serve your turn long after they are gone,<br>And so hold on when there is nothing in you<br>Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"<br><br>If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,<br>Or walk with kings - nor lose the common touch,<br>If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,<br>If all men count with you, but none too much;<br>If you can fill the unforgiving minute<br>With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,<br>Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,<br>And - which is more - you'll be a Man, my son!</em><!--EZCODE ITALIC END--><br><br> PS. Please dont let this stop this thread on meditation- and apologies for any unintended intrusion into that which I am desperate to learn more of.<br><br> I tried the colours thing last night ( Im a REAL newbie) and it frustrated the shit out of me, until I started breathing properly.......at which point......i fell asleep <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START |I --><img src=http://www.ezboard.com/images/emoticons/tired.gif ALT="|I"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> <br><br> But, like any tenacious so and so, I aint done with it yet though - on that you can rely <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :) --><img src=http://www.ezboard.com/images/emoticons/smile.gif ALT=":)"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://p216.ezboard.com/brigorousintuition.showUserPublicProfile?gid=slimmouse@rigorousintuition>slimmouse</A> at: 10/15/05 5:33 pm<br></i>
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As a former professional proofreader...

Postby banned » Sat Oct 15, 2005 7:37 pm

...I have two pet peeves {at least <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START ;) --><img src=http://www.ezboard.com/images/emoticons/wink.gif ALT=";)"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> }<br><br>It's BUDDHA, not Buddah. Buddah is what Barbra Streisand's voice is like. Discuss among yourselves.<br><br>And it's GANDHI, not Ghandi.<br><br>Thank you. We now return to our regularly scheduled thread. <!--EZCODE EMOTICON START :D --><img src=http://www.ezboard.com/images/emoticons/happy.gif ALT=":D"><!--EZCODE EMOTICON END--> <p></p><i></i>
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The Star Exercise

Postby cortez » Sat Oct 15, 2005 10:13 pm

I have been doing this for about a year now in the morning, the energy rush I feel lasts for a few hours, and I'm sure others will have better success with this technique than I have.<br><br>Here's a couple of links about how to do it<br><br>-----<br><br>The Star Exercise<br><br>ultimate reiki - star exercise meditation<br><br>(The Star Exercise can generate tremendous amounts of Universal Life Energy, or "Chi"/"Ki". If you choose to do this exercise, you do so at your own risk, and we take no responsibility for what may happen to you. I have done it for many years, and I have never known anyone hurt by it, but it is powerful. Like a circuit breaker that trips and shuts off the power when more energy than the circuits can handle attempts to pass, sometimes if your body is not yet strong enough to handle the energy flowing through it when you do the star exercise, it will knock you down. If it happens, don’t worry about it, you’ll get stronger. But when doing this exercise, make sure that the area around you is free from anything that could damage your body if it were to fall. Do not do this exercise if you are subject to epileptic seizures.)<br><br>The star exercise meditation is much more than a yoga exercise, yet we considered it to be the ultimate yoga exercise. Some feel it is the only yoga exercise a person needs to do. It is also the most powerful Reiki excercise, or healing method. In fact, it is the source of the modern Reiki teachings which are charged for. Here, you can have it free, and you don't need any attunements! In any case, it is an incredibly powerful means of stimulating the Kundalini, and storing, generating, and transmitting, Universal Life Energy (this energy has many names: prana, bio-cosmic energy, ki, Reiki, etc.). When you do the star exercise, it not only permeates your own body with energy, but it flows in and out of you, allowing you to use it to give energy to others, to heal, and to flow energy with a group of people.<br><br>Universal Life Energy is very high frequency, etheric, having some attributes that could be described as spiritual and physical, yet the energy can be affected & directed by the mind and emotions. Universal Life Energy permeates everything. It can be seen as an "aura", or projected energy beams. It can be photographed by means of "Kirilian" electrophotography. In all your yoga exercises, and meditations, you should be conscious of, and working with, this energy. Its supply is limitless, only your separate self can inhibit it.<br><br>When you do the star exercise, it is best to remove shoes and socks if possible. To do the star exercise, stand with your feet about a yard apart, arms straight out to your side like this:<br><br><!--EZCODE IMAGE START--><img src="http://www.yoga-tibet.com/staranimate2.gif"/><!--EZCODE IMAGE END--><br><br>Turn your left palm up, right palm down. Begin breathing intensely, and deeply. Sometimes you may want to do this breathing rapidly, as hard as you can. Other times you may want to do it slowly, yet still deeply and intensely. The purpose of this breathing is to draw Universal Life Energy from the air into your Solar Plexus Chakra (One of the functions of the Solar Plexus Chakra is to store up a charge of this energy, kind of like a Life Energy battery). It is not so different from rubbing a balloon to make static electricity.<br><br>While you see & feel the energy entering your Solar Plexus and building there, also see & feel the energy distribute from your Solar Plexus, throughout your whole being. At the same time, visualize the energy flowing into your left hand, through you, and out of your right hand. Continue doing this. Depending on the circumstances, it may take anywhere from a few breaths, to 144, to get the desired energy effect from the star exercise (which is a feeling of transcension and well being, and a "rush" of energy that you can feel and sometimes see). However, you won’t experience this intense energy rush until after you finish your breathing and go on to the next step. Next, inhale, hold the breath, and while you continue the visualization, silently say to yourself this affirmation: "I am one with Universal Life Energy, it is flowing through me now, I feel it." At this point, if you have done it correctly, you should start feeling the energy rush. Only hold your breath and enjoy the energy for as long as is comfortable to you. Exhale, continue the visualization and affirmation.<br><br>If you wish, the energy pouring out of your right hand can be given to someone or something. We also use it as a healing light. This is the same energy that’s associated with pyramid phenomenon (the word pyramid means "fire in the middle").<br><br>Some people will tell you that the rush you get is from getting too much oxygen via hyperventilation. But ask yourself, if that is so, why doesn’t a person breathing pure oxygen get the same effect? And how does it sometimes work with as little as one breath?<br><br>As I said earlier, the Star Exercise is great to do with others. The first time I did it was in a circle with a hundred people. The amount of energy that spun around and around through us in that circle was phenomenal. It was like a whirlwind of cosmic energy. It was the first time my "third eye" chakra opened up, and I saw the life energy that vibrates within and around all things. As you read earlier, when I told my teacher about this experience, he strongly admonished me to ignore the phenomenon.<br><br>If done with just one other person, it can be done in two ways: 1) Stand facing each other and grasp each other’s hands (making a mini-circle for the energy). 2) Stand side-by-side, and join just the hands that are between you, leaving one person’s hand open and up for receiving energy from the heavens, and the other person’s hand open and downward for sending the energy to the Earth. It looks something like this:<br><!--EZCODE IMAGE START--><img src="http://www.yoga-tibet.com/starexcer2people.jpg"/><!--EZCODE IMAGE END--><br><br>If doing it with a group of people, form a circle with all joining hands. Besides the same visualizations you do when you are doing it alone, also visualize the energy going around the entire circle, and gaining strength as it gets a boost from each person in the circle. It has been my experience that no one should be left outside the circle when you do this, due to the tremendous power that "flies off" the circle.<br><br><!--EZCODE LINK START--><a href="http://www.meditation-techniques.net/meditations/starexercise.htm">www.meditation-techniques.net/meditations/starexercise.htm</a><!--EZCODE LINK END--><br><br>--------------<br><br>here's another explanation<br><br><br><br>The second explaination is from 'The Science of Being', an old and interesting book (1923) written by Eugene Ferson<br><br>-----<br><br>...That second, the physical method, is based<br>on a certain exercise, called the "STAR<br>EXERCISE." The reason why this posture<br>is called the Star Exercise is because the<br>individual, when taking it, has to place his<br>body in such a position that it will fit into<br>the five points of a star. The Five Pointed<br>Star, the emblem of the Humanity of today,<br>the occult sign of the Fifth Period of Humanity's<br>evolution, is also called the Pentagram.<br>According to the alchemists of mediaeval<br>times, the Pentagram was considered to be<br>the key to all powers. The Philosopher's<br>Stone, the Elixir of Life, and many other<br>wonderful things, were supposed to be<br>obtained whenever that sign was properly<br>used. Yet the alchemists, though perceiving<br>the truth back of that sign, saw only its<br>geometrical form; that is, the dead letter of<br>it, which had no actual power. The living<br>force back of it, the spirit of it, remained<br>veiled to them. In this Age, the veil is<br>lifted, arid the complete truth, spirit and<br>letter, is revealed. And the mysterious<br>sign, the Pentagram, becomes indeed a KEY<br>TO' ALL POWER, as it unlocks and brings<br><br>forth in Man all his latent powers and forces.<br>It is when the human body takes the position<br>as shown in the diagrams following that the<br>actual contact of the life energy within is<br>made with the Universal Life Energy without.<br>And a man's physical, mental, and<br>emotional development will be thus stimulated<br>by an ever increasing Force. Standing<br>straight, but relaxed, with legs spread to a<br>degree corresponding to the design, the<br>arms stretched to either side on a level with<br>the shoulders, and with head erect, the<br>human body will fit 'into the five pointed<br>star. Even the proportions of a normally<br>built body will correspond to the figure of<br>the star. The head fits into the upper point,<br>the two arms into the two side points, the<br>torso into the center, and the legs into the<br>two lower points. The palm of the left<br>hand should be turned up, and that of the<br>right turned down. The whole body must<br>remain erect, but not tense. The heart,<br>situated on the left side of the human body,<br>is not only the central pumping station<br>which takes in and sends out the blood<br>through the whole body, but is also the<br>apparatus which sucks in and pours out<br>Life Energy. The palm of the left band,<br>turned up, draws in through its complicated<br>network of nerves the Universal Energy<br>present in the surrounding atmosphere.<br>That drawing action is due to the pumping<br>activity of the heart, and the stream of Life<br>Force pours into the body because of the<br><br>attraction exercised on it by the inner life<br>force of the body itself. Through the hand,<br>arm, and heart the Life Energy flows to the<br>solar plexus, whence it is distributed by way<br>of the spinal nerve throughout the whole<br>body. A certain amount of it is stored in the<br>solar plexus. and the surplus sent out<br>through the right hand, whose palm is turned<br>down, It is especially through the finger<br>tips of the right hand that the Force is flowing<br>out of the body toward the earth, which<br>attracts it because of the same Law of<br>Attraction. Thus is established a current of<br>Universal Energy, penetrating from the<br>Infinite Source into the human body, invigorating<br>and purifying it, and flowing out<br>of it only to return with ever increasing<br>power. The left palm, turned up, takes the<br>position of a receiving hand, and the right,<br>with palm turned down, appears to bless.<br>In fact, this is so. Our left hand receives all<br>blessings from the Infinite, which our being,<br>having assimilated, in its turn gives out as<br>blessings through the right hand. Not only<br>through the left hand does the Life Force<br>penetrate into the body; it pours in also<br>through every cell, and very strongly<br>through the solar plexus. Yet during the<br>exercise the main current is received as<br>stated above. Shortly after having taken the<br>position, one begins to feel a certain heaviness<br>in the palm of the left hand. It is as if a<br>heavy ball were pressing on the palm. And<br>one is sensible of a kind of tingling in the<br><br>finger tips of the right hand. These two<br>different sensations are due to the influx and<br>outpouring of Life Force. Thus the individual<br>feels that the contact is established.<br>There are a few more important points<br>to be remembered in connection with that<br>exercise, The best times to perform it are<br>in the morning, immediately after getting<br>up, before doing anything else, and at night<br>before going to bed. When performed in<br>the morning, this exercise will stimulate<br>all one's physical, mental, and emotional<br>activities, because of the ascending magnetic<br>currents of the new day, which impregnate<br><br>their local color in the exercise. In the evening,<br>on the contrary, the same exercise produces<br>an opposite effect. It soothes and<br>disposes one to sleep, in harmony with all<br>Nature, because of the downward curve of<br>the local magnetic currents.<br>Three to five minutes is all that is needed<br>to perform the Star Exercise, For beginners,<br>it would be inadvisable to do it longer,<br>because of the very strong inpour of magnetic<br>forces. But later on, when the body becomes<br>accustomed to that inflow of magnetic currents,<br>the duration of the Star Exercise can<br>be prolonged to fifteen minutes, and the<br>exercise taken more than twice a day. During<br>that exercise, one ought to be dressed<br>as lightly as possible, in order to leave the<br>body free and without pressure on any part<br>of it. A body without any covering is of<br>course the most responsive. The exercise<br>should be performed in front of an open<br>window, and, if the temperature and circumstances<br>permit, out of doors. The Star<br>Exercise should never be taken immediately<br>after a meal. At least an hour must elapse<br>between the two; otherwise a most violent<br>nausea, and sometimes indigestion, may<br>result, as the magnetic current has the same<br>effect on digestion as an electrical storm has<br>on milk. It curdles the food in process of<br>digestion, because of its strong chemical<br>action. Deep, rhythmic breathing is very<br>helpful in connection with the exercise,<br>because of the stimulating effect of the<br>69<br>oxygen. In the beginning, one's arms may<br>feel tired in the performance of the exercise.<br>No effort should be used to keep the arms up<br>in their proper position. Let them drop, and<br>lift them again when rested. Otherwise the<br>tension of the muscles and nerves resulting<br>from a prolonged forced elevation of the<br>arms will counteract, to a great extent, the<br>flow of the Force through them.<br>The exercise works so automatically that<br>there is no imperative need to think about<br>the Force flowing through the body. It<br>will flow anyway, because of the Law of<br>Attraction. There is no necessity of turning<br>the face north, because the points of the<br>compass are of no importance to those who<br>use Universal Energy, which is limitless.<br>The Star Exercise is exceedingly beneficial<br>to children. It stimulates all of their bodies,<br>especially their brain centers, and those<br>glands which play such an important role<br>in their growth and development. It also<br>harmonizes their emotional side with the<br>rest of their being, and establishes strength<br>and poise where before was weakness and<br>restlessness.<br><br>The Star Exercise ought to become a<br>part of the daily routine for everyone, young<br>and old, sick or healthy, weak or strong.<br>It is to be carried on regularly through all<br>one's life, to the very end, and the surprising<br>positive results will exceed the most sanguine<br>expectations. It is like watering a plant<br>with Life Itself, so that it should grow with<br>an ever-increasing vigor. It is indeed Life,<br>in its strongest and purest form, that one is<br>able to contact through the Star Exercise,<br>and use for the greatest unfoldment of one's<br>body, mind, and soul. For some time in the<br>beginning that process of unfoldment may<br>be rather slow. But one must persevere, and<br>complete success will be the reward of that.<br>perseverance.<br><br>When using Magnetic Vibrations, faith<br>is not necessary. One can do without it.<br>Nevertheless, faith is very helpful. The socalled<br>miraculous healings performed on<br>large crowds who come to be cured by some<br>of the Evangelist healers, is one of the easiest<br>things .to perform. It is much more difficult<br>to heal patients singly. Each person in the<br>crowd carries within him a certain light of<br>faith, an open channel for the Life Force to<br>flow through. Individually, these do not<br>amount to much, but when counted by<br>hundreds or maybe thousands, they become<br>a great light, a tremendous power, a broad<br>avenue of faith, over which the Magnetic<br>Life Force is then conveyed as well to each<br>individual singly as to the whole crowd<br>collectively. There each person is benefited<br>by the addition to his own little faith of all<br>the other faiths present. Naturally the<br>result thus obtained is usually a great<br>success.<br> <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://p216.ezboard.com/brigorousintuition.showUserPublicProfile?gid=cortez@rigorousintuition>cortez</A> at: 10/15/05 10:04 pm<br></i>
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