A Meditation Technique For the New Age

An Ancient Principle Applicable For Today's Life

Now a common word, what does 'meditation' mean, and what does it do? A definition accepted in most dictionaries for meditation is, continuous and profound contemplation or musing on a subject or series of subjects of a deep or abstruse nature. This is really 'reflection" But what then is really meditation? Prior to the beginning of the 20th century perhaps that is what it meant. But with the re-discovery of spiritual truths revealed in Ancient India, the original meaning of the word is re-appearing. Meditation, or 'dyanum' in Sanskrit means generally involves where one consciously discounts wandering thoughts and fantasies, and calming and focusing the mind, while controlling the breath, and sensory awareness.

So, the meaning in the dictionary is really referring to 'reflection' or concentration, both pre-requisites for meditation, but not meditation itself. For unless one can voluntarily control her/her basic life functions (such as breathing) and meaningfully turn off the senses to outside stimuli, one cannot even hope to enter into meditation. But, does that mean that meditation is open only for those who have mastered control of their own life forces? Not exactly. There is one meditation anyone can do, and by doing it, one's life force itself comes under control; ones senses turn off, and the mind becomes quiet. Then the peace and realization that comes from true meditation comes to the practitioner. What is the name of this meditation, and how is it done?

Its name is Soham (or Hamsa if one is following the meditation as taught by Paramhamsa Yogananda). Soham in sanskrit simply means I am He. Even spoken over and over, the syllables merge.so one is saying Sohamsoham.I am He, He am I.it is a prayer, and a meditation mantra (a spiritually charged word or series of words used a meditation theme). If you but practice it once, you will see immediately its positive effects. One feels calm, and de-stressed. One feels close to his/her intuition, and one feels as if the world of material things is less important due to its overbearing insignificance when compared to the bliss one feels in meditation.

Lets see how its done. Find a place where you feel most comfortable, and private.with as few distractions as possible. Sit up straight with your spine in a line.do not slouch. You must be comfortable, so sit on a chair or on the floor with a soft mat or carpet underneath you. Close your eyes, but in a relaxed manner. Now relax your whole body, part by part by first tensing that part, and then relaxing it. When you feel completely relaxed, command your mind to be silent, your emotions to be still, keeping your body as relaxed as possible. Now focus on the sound of your breath coming in. Associate that sound and feeling with the word 'So'. As you exhale, listen to the sound and associate it with the word Ham. As a guide, So sounds as does if you are saying it in English. Ham could actually be written as Hom, as the a in Ham is very weak. As you do this meditation, actually imagine the air entering your nose and traveling all the way down into your lungs. This is one So. As you exhale, you can imagine the air traveling out of the lungs, up to the nose nad out of your body. This is one Ham. Beginners in this meditation usually silently say the word So with each inhalation and the word Ham with each exhalation. Continue in this way, as long as you are comfortable, but no less than 5 minutes, and no longer than 20 minutes until the meditation feels natural to go longer.

As you practice this meditation, you will see that So Ham So Ham, becomes just Soham. Soham is by far the easiest meditation, and not be done with the breath controlled, and the senses not picking up stimulii. As breathing is natural, and it comes to all living creatures without any effort, so is this meditation natural. However, it is at once one of the deepest possible techniques, as said by the great Yogi Master, Paramhamsa Yogananda, this technique brings one who practices it , "to haven's door".


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