Leading Guided Meditation Part 2

Hallelujah ūüôā

This morning, after leading a guided meditation, a few key points became clear.

  1.  A proper introduction to the practice is most valuable!  In addition to explaining the process for the practice this morning, also offer an explanation of how they can take this practice home with them and practice by themselves.
    1. Let the students know that you’ll be practicing various techniques, and hopefully one of the techniques resonates with them so that they can take it home with them and practice regularly. ¬†Let them know that an ‘Om’ will signify the beginning of a new technique.
      1. Also, let them know that all the techniques are tools that we eventually need to let go of. ¬†The tools are to calm the mind, but ultimately the process of meditation takes us beyond the mind completely, so we don’t want to be attached to the tools, but keep them in their proper place. ¬†The tools are there to serve us, not we to serve them. ¬†They help us train the mind so that we become its master rather than slave.
  2. After each practice, bring closure. ¬†For example, if the focus is on the sound of the breath and listening to the breath, consider a transitional statement and guidance going forward with the practice, rather than just ending the practice with an ‘Om.’
  3. Before beginning: remind them that everything worth while takes time.  No one has bypassed the mind the first time.  So the process of practicing concentration and meditation is like training an innocent puppy.  As we practice, we are not to set up thoughts/the ego as an enemy, but rather see it as totally innocent, and melt it with compassion and understanding.  We can see the ego/thinking process identifies with the animal body and is concerned with its survival Рwhich in many ways is a totally reasonable concern.  So, instead of condemning the ego and the thought process, we just witness it and melt it with compassion.
    1. Progress in concentration and meditations happens daily and naturally and benefits when the welfare of the calmness of mind is taken into consideration regarding all activities of daily life: from food choices to conversations to movies to music.  Everything adds up and either contributes to our peace of mind or its disturbance.
    2. When first beginning practice, don’t expect anything. ¬†Just commit to practice out of a sincere interest in the truth, freeing oneself from the illusion that happiness is something to be gained externally, and to confirm the spiritual teachings directly via one’s own experience (e.g. The Kingdom is Within).
    3. Inspire them! ¬†Give the students all the inspiration they need – but be weary of slipping into a preaching mode. ¬†Be sure to speak sincerely and enthusiastically but not preaching. ¬†Meditation is not so much about what is heard but what is unheard, so even as they listen to instruction they can listen to the silence out of which all sound arises. ¬†Allow the whole experience to be meditative rather than something intellectual (i.e. the instruction). ¬†Turn giving and listening to the instruction into a meditation itself! ¬†Don’t get intellectual. ¬†Prioritize ‘being’ rather than ‘doing.’
      1. On that note, clarify that the techniques are ‘doing,’ but the end of meditation is pure being. ¬†It is ultimately about being, not doing! ¬†The doing can just help calm and purify the mind, and when the mind is calm and pure it is easier to go beyond it.
    4. Be so clear in your preparation that you know exactly the steps you will guide them through so that you can communicate the plan ahead of time. ¬†Then again, don’t want to burden students with ideas to cling to about future expectations…sooo be weary. ¬†All for fun!
    5. Have fun ūüôā ¬†Enjoy it. ¬†During the whole process, hold an energy of gratitude for the opportunity to give and be of service. ¬†The giver is truly the receiver! ¬†Giving is a great opportunity to grow spiritually – and that is what we are here for!

Gloria in Excelsis Deo!

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