This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
By Joseph K. Ferguson
.3 What is Meditation?.........................4 What Should I Wear when Meditating?............................................................................................................9 Conclusion.........................4 What are the Benefits of Meditation?.....................................................6 The Start of Meditation.........................4 How Much Time Should be Devoted to Meditation?........................................................10 ...........7 Breath Counting Meditation......................5 Getting Prepared to Meditate.................8 Problems People Experience with Meditation...................................Index Forward........................................................................................................................................5 What Religions can Practice Meditation?.............................................
However. the exercises I've written in this guide are complete. Buddhism and Hinduism from such countries as India. I've written this small guide in hopes that more people take up the art of meditation. and a person can use them to their fullest without seeking extra guidance. I do hope that you. Ferguson . the reader. I have studied meditation with masters of Taoism. I thank you for taking the time to read this guide and incorporating its exercises into your life. Thailand. Instead. Yours in Peace Joseph K. and then learn more from more experienced teachers. My goal is to give enough that a beginner may start his/her meditation practice. I believe I'm just a practitioner of an exercise that means a great deal to me. and I am an American who has lived in Asia for nearly 15 years. so what you are reading is my own words and thoughts on the subject of meditation. I honestly don't want this guide to be wordy. Ferguson. Singapore and Indonesia. However. find this guide informative and helpful. I wrote this guide from my own personal experience and what my own teachers have taught me.Foreward My name is Joseph K. and is an art that I will continue to practice. I do not consider myself a “master” as such. but instead I want it to be concise and easy to read. China. It has had dramatic effects on my own life. Burma. Malaysia.
Here are a just few of the benefits: • • • • • • • Helping ease pain Reducing risks of heart disease Reducing symptoms of Asthma Helping cope with PMS Reducing high blood pressure Reducing cholesterol levels Strengthening the immune system How Much Time Should be Devoted to Meditation? Many Asian masters of Taoism.What is Meditation? Meditation is the purposeful act of being still and calming the mind. While those masters were looking for enlightenment. Some of the mental benefits of meditation include: • • • • • • • • Reducing stress Easing symptoms of depression Easing panic attacks Reducing Anxiety Helping cope with phobias Reducing irritability Improving memory Improving confidence Some of the physical health benefits of meditation are numerous. Many will claim that meditation can be enlightening or one can transsend the chains of the mortal world. and new benefits are constantly being found. and yet. What are the Benefits of Meditation? Studies have resulted in some significant health benefits by performing meditation daily. It is an activity that any one can do as it is a simple process. and to learn more about yourself (which IS a form of enlightenment). Especially if one has no guidance in the process. we common laymen are simply looking for relaxation. . it is an activity that can be extremely difficult. we don't need to spend that much time in our practice. relieve mental tensions. Buddhism and Hinduism may spend hours in meditation. And that can happen in as little as 5 minutes. Studies are being conducted all the time on the benefits of meditation. But this guide does not talk about that subject. the guide promotes meditation as a way to reduce stress. Some stories tell the tales of masters spending weeks or even months in meditation without food or water. Lucky for us. Instead.
It is recommended that each beginner start by devoting 5 minutes a day in silent meditation. For example. you can do that too. so long as you close the blinds. Any person may practice meditation as it is merely a healthy exercise. As a person becomes more proficient in the exercise. it is with meditation. When we go jogging or lifting weights. and has no religious bearing what-so-ever. . In fact. Do not let anyone tell you otherwise. But what type of clothing you wear is completely up to you. while adopted by these religions.Meditation can offer us a great amount of benefit should we simply devote 5 to 15 minutes of daily practice. itself. What Religions can Practice Meditation? This question is asked a great deal. a beginner may not be able to sit still for more than 5 minutes. no matter what religion they may be. but the truth is meditation. shorts. If you are at home. then you can easily sit still in your chair and meditate in whatever clothes you wear to work. and therefore is really the same faith as the person meditating. The amount of time spent in meditation is completely at the disgression of the practitioner. much like jogging or lifting weights. as well as aid in mental and physical health. the time spent meditation can be increased. and you have 5 minutes. In this time. nothing could be further from the truth. the goal is to quiet the mind. Meditation is an exercise of the mind. and the beginner needs to learn to not entertain those thoughts. We often associate meditation with Buddhism or Hinduism. can practice. or even a suit and tie. If you are at work. It is an exercise that is not associated with any religion. If you feel the need to meditate naked. is actually nonreligious. Meditation is an exercise designed to still our minds and promote calmness. too. It is merely and exercise. as the mind are unused to being still for any great length of time. And because of this strengthening of their faith. it is recommended that a person wear something comfortable. Think of it this way. In fact. many people have experienced a strengthening in their own religious beliefs after taking up the practice of meditation. as thoughts are constantly flowing. It is true that meditation came from the Eastern cultures. So. And we often see people from these religions meditating in front of a icon of their religious deity. It is difficult. and many people refuse to meditate simple because they believe that the act of meditation is against their religion. It does not matter what your faith is. many Christians have experienced a renewed energy in their faith to God through meditation. We build muscle and improve the cardiovascular system. we are practicing a exercise designed to help our bodies be healthy. and any person. You can also meditate in jogging pants. What Should I Wear when Meditating? Meditating can be done in any type of clothing. have opted to meditate while concentrating on doctrines of their belief. With that being said.
Your hands can rest on your thighs or knees. You will want to choose a time that you know you won't have any distractions. Do not tuck the chin into the chest. As you progress in your practice. Just let the bottom jaw hang freely. The most important aspect at this stage is to ensure you are comfortable. The tip of the tongue should touch the alveolar ridge. is to simply sit in a chair with your back straight and both feet on the ground. so be mindful of this. (Half Lotus Postion) In both meditation position. Where ever you choose to do your meditation. you'll need a place in which to meditate. It is hard to calm your mind when the area around you needs cleaning.. and the upper and lower teeth should not be touching. but a slight downward slant is preferred. It is often beneficial to be able to meditate at the same time every day (beneficial. This is a good sitting position for a beginner. you want a place that will be free from distractions. by far. . which is just behind the upper teeth. Tension in the shoulders transfers to the mind. you can sit in this position on the bed or couch if you prefer. palm upward. but your shoulders relaxed. Now. you will want to keep your back straight. Many people find that they tense their shoulders. either sitting in a chair or in the half lotus position. Other ways to meditate would be to sit on a nice soft cushion with legs folded into what is called the half lotus position (see illustration below).Getting Prepared to Meditate The first thing the practitioner usually does. make sure it is free from clutter. The chin should slightly point downward. The easiest. You do not need to make any special gestures with your hands. Don't be afraid to move a bit to find where you are most comfortable. Many people choose their bedrooms. Of course. that can work as well. and this will stop you from relaxing fully. But. You don't actually have to get on the floor. you time spent meditating will increase. There are several positions that one can take while meditating. but if you have a quiet living room. but not necessary). just as sitting in the chair. is figure out a time in which they can devote to their meditation. Again. as it is comfortable and allows the practitioner to focus on their meditating. Remember. The lips should be slightly open. Just let the hands relax and keep their natural curl. you only need 5 minutes. you want your back straight.
When you have each body part relaxed. your thoughts are moving through your body in a circular motion. . The easiest way to do this is to focus your thoughts on different body parts. and let it happen. lungs and heart shoulders upper arms forearms hands stomach and internal organs waist and hips thighs knees shins feet calves hamstrings buttocks small of back upper back back of neck back of head Notice. You will feel that part relax. • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Top of head forehead eyes jaw neck chest. if you will that when you relax each part.The Start of Meditation Now that a comfortable position has been found. Start with the head and go through each part in order. and up the back. the body must lose all tension. You do not have to spend a great deal of time on each part. You simply think each part relaxed. you may now begin meditation proper. You start at the top of the head. and then move to the next body part. meeting back to the top of the head. move your thoughts down the front of the body. Here is a simple list you can follow when relaxing each body part. Just move your thoughts there and think that body part relaxed.
then you exhale and finish the count of one. Keep it normal and natural. you perform an inhalation while starting the count of one. For example. and that's why meditation is practiced daily. and then start again at 1. But even this “simple” meditation can be difficult for the beginner. you can count 10 exhalations. It is recommended that the beginner start by counting their exhales. . then exhale while counting 2. but do not entertain those thoughts. It happens. and that you can fill your lungs with much more oxygen than you ever did before. and then switch to counting 10 inhalations. while maintaining your normal breathing pattern. inhale. then exhale while counting 1 (breath in. By taking slower and deeper breaths. you are actually utilizing more of your lungs than under normal circumstances. Inhale again. Counting your breath has one major function. don't get discouraged. It helps keep the mind focused on something other than random thoughts. To do this. So that we get better at keeping the mind calm and still. And if you do actually entertain that random thought. Let your mind drag out the count until you have finished the exhale. breath out while thinking “ooooonnnnneee” for the duration of the exhale). It has wonderful benefits. This is a meditation that even masters continue to do. This is great for helping the lungs to function better. You can also count inhalation and exhalation together as one unit. The process is to simply count your breath as you inhale or exhale. Random thoughts will still occur.Breath Counting Meditation Breath counting meditation is the simplest meditation to do. and is simple to learn. The practitioner counts each exhalation up to 10. But don't let its simplicity fool you. This is a good thing. Let it happen and then continue your breath counting. For example. you can also to count the inhalations. You do not need to change your breathing pattern at any time. Continue this until you have reached the number 10. and then begins the count over again. You will find that in time that your breathing will become slower and deeper. Do not pause in your breathing or hold your breath at any time. you will find that your breathing becomes easier. After a couple of weeks of exhalation counting. Over time.
There is always something that needs to be thought about or figured out. And if you stop letting them take control of your thoughts during the session. The first. perhaps stretch a bit. when counting the breath. They just “pop” into the head. We are flooding our body with oxygen. open your eyes. This too goes away the more you practice your meditation. it is your time to calm the mind. where the leg in question is having the blood flow blocked by the weight of the other leg. and we all face this. This feeling does go away the more you practice. This is the sign of a mind that doesn't know how to relax. when you start your meditation session. That feeling isn't dangerous. These thoughts can enter the mind. or dizziness is caused by the fact that we have forgotten how to use our lungs to a lager capacity. and our body has forgotten how to cope with so much. If this happens to you. This occurs mostly in the half lotus position. but you should let them fly out as freely as they come. Any problems you had before you started your session will be there when you end. If this were to occur. Another issue that people complain about is the pins and needles feelings one gets when sitting on a leg too long. . but it can be uncomfortable. your mind will better be able to deal with them after. and sometimes they are hard to let go. or perhaps at a later time. simply stop counting. then perhaps switch to sitting in a chair. some people do experience a few problems.Problems People Experience with Meditation While there is no real danger to meditating. Random thoughts is one of the largest problems a beginner faces. This light headed feeling. and then continue when you are not dizzy any more. Remember. is generally the feeling of becoming light headed.
I also hope that my words inspire you to continue with the practice offered. It may be simple. Many people use meditation to combat the stress of daily life. and may you find the inner peace you have been seeking. and many of the popular magazines are picking up on this. Namaste. It is the perfect way to get a little “me” time when the world demands so much.Conclusion Meditating is an excellent way to promote harmonious thoughts. Joe Ferguson . Should you wish more instruction. Medical science is constantly finding more and more benefits from the practice of meditation. Good luck to you. but it can have powerful effects that can only benefit you. but many people are simply lost on how to get started. I sincerely hope that this little booklet helps you in your quest for inner peace. I highly recommend seeking out a professional who can help you continue on your chosen path. You can find all kinds of references in magazines that tell us to meditate. as well as keep the body's cardiovascular system strong and healthy.