Types of Meditation
- Soham Mantram Meditation
SOHAM means “I AM HE”. It signifies the identity of the INDIVIDUAL SOUL, ATMA with the SUPREME SOUL PARAMATMA. SOHAM means “THAT I AM”. “SA” means “THAT” and “AHAM” means “I AM”. It is also termed “AJAPA GAYATRI”.
Now watch the breath. The sound “SO” is produced when you inhale and “HAM” is produced when you exhale. This mantra is repeated by you unconsciously. Daily you are breathing 21,600 breaths or sohams.
The total breaths of 21,600 of a human body in 24 hours is distributed to the vital needs of the seven divisions in the body are as follows:-Sl. No.LOCATION OF PLEXUS CHAKRA BREATHS TIMECHAKRABREATHSTIME1.
Sacral or Pelvic Plexus (Region between anus and genitals) Muladharam6006.01 am 6.40 am2. Hypogastric Plexus (Genitals) Svadishthanam60006.41 am 1.20 pm3. 3 Epigastric Plexus (Navel) Manipuram60001.21 pm 8.00 pm4. Cardiac Plexus (Heart) Anahatam60008.01 pm 2.40 am5. Carotid Plexus (Throat) Visuddham10002.41 am 3.46 am6. Hypothalamus or Medulla Plexus (Point between the eyebrows) Ajna10003.47 am 4.53 am7. Cerebral Plexus (Top of cranium) Sahasrara10004.54 am 6.00 am
1. Sit in a suitable posture facing north.
2. Close your eyes.
3. Focus your mind at the tip of the nose.
4. Inhale slowly chanting “SO” mentally.
5. Retain the breath for 5 seconds.
6. Exhale the breath slowly chanting “HAM” mentally.
7. Repeat “SO” and “HAM” breathing meditation for 10 to 20 minutes daily in the morning and evening.
Morning between 4.30 to 6.00 am.
Evening between 5.30 to 7.00pm.
1. Clean the nostrils well.
2. Drink a small cup of fruit juice or milk.
3. Do not follow the breath to the end. Mindful you breathe in “SO” and mindful you breathe out “HAM”.
4. Acknowledge and reject any thoughts which appear in your mind during meditation. Still your thoughts which will disappear slowly.
5. Train yourself daily and gradually, increase the duration of meditation. Practice makes perfect.
6. Negate the body while chanting “SOHAM” mantra. Try to identify yourself with the supreme soul.
7. Do not practise when you have cold and flu and in full stomach.
8. After a few months, you can practise “SOHAM” meditation while walking in the garden, sitting on a chair when traveling long distance for more than one hour and lying on the bed before sleeping.
BENEFITS OF BREATHING MEDITATION AND “SOHAM” MANTRA MEDITATION
1. It purifies and calms the mind. Tranquility of the mind is attained.
2. It eliminates fatigue and stress and so improves physical fitness and relaxation.
3. It is beneficial to psychiatric, mental illness, insomnia and hypertensive persons.
4. It improves the lung function in healthy and asthmatic persons.
- Om Mantram Meditation
CONCENTRATION AND MEDITATION ON OM AT AJNA CHAKRA
Concentrate and meditate on OM at TRIKUTI Point. Trikuti is the space or point between the two eyebrows. This is the location of AJNA CHAKRA, which is the sixth chakra. It is the seat of the mind. It is situated within the sushumna nadi. The three nadis namely ida (lunar current), pingala (solar current) and sushumna (central neutral current) meet at the Ajna chakra.
The Bija Mantra of the Ajna chakra is OM. Chant Om several times mentally while walking leisurely in a garden or while sitting on a chair in a room. Concentrate and meditate on
Om at Trikuti while traveling in a bus, train, car or plane for a few hours.
When a spiritual person chants OM mantra daily for an hour for a few years, he acquires the tremendous power of OM mantra. When he gives the mantra to his disciples, the power is transmitted.
The Vision Of Ajna Chakra
HOW TO CONCENTRATE AND MEDITATE ON AJNA CHAKRA
01. Lit the lamp.
02. Offer flowers, water and fruits to your God or Goddess or Guru.
03. Sit in any comfortable posture facing north.
04. Keep your head, neck and trunk in an erect position.
05. Purification of the body
a. Dip your three fingers except the thumb and small finger into a copper or panchapatram container of water.
b. Touch your head at the centre chanting the mantra OM ASTHTRAYA NAMAHA. Repeat a and b three times.
c. Dip your three fingers into the water again and starting from your right ear, take your right hand around your head and at the same time chant OM ASTHTRAYA NAMAHA and sprinkle away the water as you reach the right ear.
Repeat this process three times.
BENEFITS: You drive away the evil spirits over your head and around your head.
d. Take a piece of white cloth and moisten it with water at one end and wipe your right eye and left eye and finally your mouth. By doing this, you have cleaned your eyes and mouth.
Take a spoonful of water in your right palm and sip three times while chanting the mantra
OM ATHMA THATHVAYA NAMAHA
OM VIDHYA THATHVAYA NAMAHA
OM SIVA THATHVAYA NAMAHA
BENEFITS: The esophagus and the gastrointestinal tract are moistened.
This is conducive for praying, concentration and meditation and other yogic practices.
07. Application of Vibuthi
Take a little vibuthi in your right hand and while applying on your forehead three times chant mantra
OM SATHPURUCHA VASTHRAYA NAMAHA or OM mantra thrice.
08. Nadi Purification
NOTE: Nadi purification and Pranayama should be practiced under the guidance of a GURU or YOGI.
If you have no Guru or Yogi to teach you than proceed to the following.
10. Offer Benzoin smoke (Dhupam), burn the incense sticks and camphor (Deepam ).
11. Pray to your God or Goddess or Guru.
a. Chant relevant mantras and devotional songs for a few minutes.
b. Salutation to Guru. Say the following:
Guru Brahma, Guru Vishnu, Guru Devo, Mahesvaraha,
Guru Sakshath, Param Brahma Tasmai Sri Gurave Namaha
12. Close your eyes. Fix your mind at Trikuti.
13. Chant the mantra AUM for 10 to 15 minutes slowly and rhythmically. Gradually, increase the duration of chanting and concentration and meditation. Chant the mantra verbally, semi-verbally and mentally. Chant the mantra with meaning and feeling. Think you are healthy, wealthy and happy in your life. Meditate on AUM for a few minutes.
14. While chanting the AUM mantra, try to shun away the other thoughts that may try to creep into your mind and cause disturbance of concentration. Under rigorous practice, Aum has to be chanted in a repetitive way. This would pave to an unbelievable belief when the AUMKARA NADA (SOUND) stays in your mind and heart during your other activities.
15. Meditation is concluded by repeating the following mentally for a few minutes.
” LET ALL BEINGS BE HAPPY IN THE WORLD ”
” LET ALL BEINGS BE PEACEFUL IN THE WORLD ”
” MAY GOD SHOWER HIS BLESSINGS ON ALL BEINGS ”
Open your eyes slowly and look at your SATGURU or DEITY without winking your eyes.
16. Practice concentration and meditation for a few times in the morning and evening daily. Regular and persistent training daily and patience is necessary to succeed in meditation.
BENEFITS OF CHANTING OM AND MEDITATION ON OM
1. A person can acquire the following Siddhis and tremendous powers of the OM.
2. Purifies and calms the mind. Tranquility of body and mind is attained.
3. Ego, hatred, jealousy, anger and greed are gradually eradicated.
4. Gives spiritual strength and removes all the obstacles to spiritual progress and ignorance of “SELF”. Self realization leads to God realization.
5. Mind would attain supreme state of divinity and there would be a sense of happiness and peace.
6. The person becomes Jivan mukta which means liberated while living.
7. Finally one is able to attain the goal of human life that is to free from Samsara- cycle of births and deaths and ENLIGHTENMENT.
AUM mantra proves to be very useful and the only tool to realize the “SELF”
The great saint Thirumularís Thirumanthiram Tamil songs are worth mentioning here.
PORRUKINREN PUKAZNDUM PUKAL GYANATHAI
TERRUKINREN SINDAI NAYAKAN SEVADI
SARRUKINREN ARAIYO SIVA YOGATHAI
ERRUKINREN NAMBIRAN OAR EZUTHAI
Meaning in English
I praise, I laud
Jnana that is our refuge;
I adore the Holy feet of the Lord,
Constant in my thought;
I expound Siva Yoga;
Hearken you !
I chant the one letter, AUM
Dear to our Lord.
OAREZHUTHALE ULAKENGUM THANAKI
MOOVEZHUTHALE MULAIKINRA JOTHIYEI
MAAVEZHUTHALE MAYAKKAME URRATHE
Meaning in English
By One letter A, He all worlds became;
By Two letters A and U, He the two became SIVA and SAKTI;
By three letters A, U and M , He the Light became;
By letter M was Maya ushered in.
EXPERIENCES IN OM MEDITATION
1. Chanting of OM produces one-pointednesss of mind.
2. Light will form around the personís head as an aura.
3. During meditation you experience divine smell.
4. You will experience Astral travel.
5. A very powerful bright divine light like that of a rising sun will be transmitted from the Trikuti and it can brighten a dark room for two minutes and disappears gradually. This mystic and spiritual experience is indescribable in words. The divine light appears when your mind is in asemiconscious state.
6. You will see beautiful and colourful flowers in the gardens and tall green trees in the mountains and sometimes your God, Goddess and Satguru in the temples.
7. Please refer to “Experiences in Meditation” for more details.
Do not have attachments to these lights and other siddhis which may hinder your spiritual advancements.
MEDITATION – PRACTICAL INSTRUCTIONS
1. Acknowledge and reject any thoughts which appear in your mind during meditation.
2. Still your thoughts. Thoughts will disappear slowly.
3. Concentrate and meditate on the object of meditation for ten to twenty minutes.
4. Relax for five minutes.
5. Continue your meditation on the same object for another ten to twenty minutes.
The following thoughts may appear in your mind during meditation.
1. Evil thoughts
2. Social thoughts and problems
3. Business thoughts and problems
4. Good thoughts
If too many thoughts distract your meditation, breathe in and breathe out slowly focusing your mind on the tip of your nose for five minutes and then continue your meditation.
- Breathing Meditation
Daily we breathe 21,600 breaths or Sohams in 24 hours.
One breath consists of inhalation, retention and exhalation.
We breathe 900 breaths in an hour.
So 15 breaths in a minute.
HOW TO MEDITATE ON BREATHING
1. Lit the lamp.
2. Offer flowers, water and fruits to your God or Goddess or Guru.
3. Offer benzoin smoke (dhupam), incense sticks and camphor (deepam).
4. Sit in any comfortable posture facing north.
5. Keep your head, neck and trunk in an erect position.
6. Chant mantras and devotional songs for a few minutes and seek the blessing of your God, Goddess and Guru to succeed in your meditation.
7. Close your eyes.
8. Now try to fix your mind at the tip of the nose.
9. Inhale your breath slowly and rhythmically.
10. Retain your breath for five seconds.
11. Exhale your breath slowly and rhythmically.
12. Perform this breathing meditation for 10 to 30 minutes.
Morning between 4.30 to 6.00 am.
Evening between 5.30 to 7.00pm.
1. Clean the nostril well.
2. Drink a small cup of fruit juice or milk.
3. Mindful you breathe in and mindful you breathe out at the point that comes contact with your breaths.
4. Gradually, increase the duration of the meditation.
5. Acknowledge and reject any thoughts which appear in your mind during meditation. Still your thoughts which will disappear slowly.
6. Do not practice when you have cold and flu and in full stomach.
- Mystic Experiences after Meditation
Anahata sounds are the mystic sounds heard by the Yogi at the beginning stage of his meditation. This subject is termed Nada-Anusandhana. This is the sign of purification of the nadis due to the practice of Pranayama. These sounds are heard through the right ear with or without closing the ears. The sounds are distinct when heard through the closed ears.
Sit in a suitable posture. Close the ears with right and left thumb and hear the sounds. Occasionally you can hear the sounds through the left ear also. Practise to hear from the right ear only. You are hearing distinctly from the right ear because of the influence of Pingala nadi. The Anahata sound is also called OMKARA DHVANI. It is due to the vibration of Prana in the heart.
MOVEMENT OF MIND
After a short practice of meditation you will feel that the body gets lighter in a short time, say 15 to 30 minutes. You may be semiconscious of the body and surroundings or may become quite unconscious of the body. There is a great deal of happiness owing to concentration. This happiness resulting from concentration is different from sensual pleasures. Dharana and Dhyana have a power to sharpen the intellect.
- Rhythmical Breathing
In exhalation, the prana goes out 16 digits and in inhalations, it comes in 12 digits thus loosing 4 digits.
Inhale slowly through both nostrils counting 4 OMS.
Retain the breath for 8 OMS (Internal Kunbhaka).
Exhale slowly through both nostrils for 4 OMD.
Retain the breath outside (External Kunbhaka for 8 OMS).
Repeat the above process a number of times according to your ability. Rhythm is more important than the length of breath.
fter a few months of practice, you can increase the duration of inhalation and exhalation to 8 OMS and the period between to 18 OMS.