A friend asked me the other day, “so tell me man really–why do you meditate?”
I grinned and told him how it brings clarity to your mind and relaxes your body, and how it allows me to de-stress without drinking alcohol or smoking a cigarette. He asked me
“So what’s the best way to meditate? I mean, how do you do it? What technique do you use?”
“Well, what do you like to do for exercise?”
I asked this because everyone is different. There are so many meditation techniques that certain ones may be useful for some people and not as much for others. The point is: there is not one way of meditating. You don’t have to sit on the ground. One thing you do have to remember is that, you should keep your back as straight as possible during your meditation.
When practicing Gazing, you will be working on your powers of attention, concentration, focus. If you have good meditation, or even if you are just learning how to meditate, this technique can be very useful for you. You will practice gazing at an object. It can be anything you choose. Or better yet–let the object choose you.
In my case, I chose an avocado plant I had personally raised from seed. I found meditation practice is more enjoyable when the object you’ve chosen to meditate with is also growing–a living, loving being. This adds an extremely interesting dimension to the meditation practice itself.
At one point during your meditation, the question may occur to you: “Who is doing the meditating here?” And who is to say that the living being in front of you is not meditating on you? Just a thought.
How to Meditate using Gazing: the object you choose is very important—so choose it carefully. I say this because as you continue to meditate with it, your understanding of the object will evolve, progress, develop.
The object will change before your very eyes. The interesting thing is that fundamentally, the object has not changed. It is only your understanding, interpretation, vision of it that has changed! Your view is not as limited as it was before. You are teaching yourself how to see the object more directly—how to understand it at a much deeper level than is available in everyday, illusory, physical reality.
Sit comfortably facing your meditation object. Straighten your spine. Place the object so that it is slightly below eye level. This will usually be the most comfortable gazing position, but feel free to try others.
Practice this meditation at a time of day when Silence reigns. Sunrise, Sunset are excellent choices. It depends on which time of day you feel more in tune with. Sit near a large window; if you have a meditation spot outdoors, even better. The point is to pick a spot where sunlight will stream through your object. This is important.
When you gaze, don’t stare at one spot; let your gaze flow over the object in a clockwise spiral. You can even cross your eyes a bit and place your attention on the images created by the overlapping fields of vision from each eye (this is an advanced and very effective technique). If you cannot cross your eyes, then simply focus on every detail of the plant. The depth of a leaf illuminated by Sunlight. An ant climbing. The flutter of a leaf in the Wind.
Ask your Self: What is this being sitting before me trying to tell me? And why can’t I understand it? Am I somehow preventing, blocking myself from understanding it?
Continue moving your gaze over the object in a clockwise spiral, noticing every detail. You are looking for the True Nature of the object; ignore every idea and concept that you have been told about the object–it is all second-hand knowledge.
To gain a fuller understanding of the object, ask yourself: How is the object similar to me? Can I see myself as the object? What would it be like to be the object? I just wish for you to meditate on this and see. Soon the dots will begin to slowly connect. As time passes, they will connect faster. You will see interesting patterns everywhere and meditation will create the sense in you that: It is true, Everything will be alright.
So you want to know