Meditation Matters

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Welcome to “Meditation Matters” – a weekly journal and podcast published each Thursday, exploring the many worlds of meditation.

Meditation is the gateway to the infinite, the spiritual realm, the reality within us. Meditation can energise our life, transform our outlook, solve all our problems and unlock hidden capacities.

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Everyone can meditate: it’s simple, it’s natural, it’s powerful … and it’s free.

Meditation is self-discovery, self-awareness of all that lies within us beyond the thinking, rational mind. As we go deeper within, we discover that what lies within is also the key to understanding and appreciating all that lies around us as well.

We can read about meditation, talk about meditation, think about meditation – but for the many benefits of meditation, we have to PRACTISE … daily.

“Meditation Matters” will explore the theory and philosophy of meditation, but will mostly focus on the practice; the lived experience of meditation.

We’ll introduce simple, practical exercises that anyone can enjoy at home on a daily basis, and the steps to establish your daily meditation practice: how to incorporate meditation into your everyday life and make it a part of your very living – for meditation has to be a lived experience that flows into every heartbeat, every thought, every intention, every feeling, every breath of our life, to transform not only the way we see and feel, but our very way of being.

We’ll share our knowledge of meditation, our passion for meditation, our experience of meditation and our love of meditation.

“Meditation Matters” will explore all matters meditation: we’ll look at the challenges and obstacles facing someone starting a practice of meditation for the first time, and maintaining that practice. We’ll also explore the many benefits of meditation, and most importantly, delve into the infinite reasons why … Meditation Matters.

129: A Drop in Search of Its Ocean (4) – God-Realisation

Though the drops may have forgotten their source, they retain always an innate and compelling urge. Their urge is ultimately to return to the ocean from whence they came. Yet because they have forgotten the ocean, initially the urge presents itself simply as a yearning to transcend their drop-limitations, to grow, learn and explore, to join and become an ever-larger entity.
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126: A Drop in Search of Its Ocean (1) – Water and Consciousness

Every drop originates in the ocean; and to the ocean, every drop yearns to return.

The ocean is comprised of countless drops. Yet we don’t perceive the ocean as innumerable entities: we perceive the ocean as one.

When the sun shines on the surface of the ocean, some of its surface water is evaporated. It changes its form from liquid to gas, and so apparently disappears.
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125: How Would You Like Your Potatoes?

I was once fortunate to stay for about 10 days at a fine hotel in Phnom Penh, which incorporated an international school for chefs. The student chef’s training included preparing meals for our large group of vegetarians. It seemed that at least one dish at each meal had to be prepared from potatoes, and that no dish could be repeated over the course of our stay. Alongside a superb array of other courses, we marveled at the inexhaustible panoply of potato presentations.
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124: Who is Not God?

A seeker once came to a spiritual Master, eager to ask one burning question: “Who is God?”

The Master smilingly responded: “Who is not God?”
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123: What About God?

Talking or writing about God is pointless, fruitless frittering.

Whoever or whatever God is, lies beyond the realms of thought, analysis and even description.

God can only be felt, experienced and realised.

Whenever we try to describe, define or confine God, God eludes us.
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122: Breath of the Heart

Choose a quiet, uncluttered place. Sit so that the spine is straight, yet relaxed. Close your eyes and focus all attention on your breath.

Imagine the outside world has dissolved. Nothing exists beyond your controlled breathing.
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120: From One Candle

As we grow through our meditation and spiritual practise in peace, poise, clarity, creativity, purpose, joy, inspiration and aspiration, it is inevitable that we will want others to enjoy these same benefits. The practise of meditation is so simple and its effects so overwhelmingly positive, how can we not wish our friends and loved ones – indeed all of suffering humanity – to share in our miraculous discovery?
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117: Folded Hands in Meditation (6) – A Lightning Rod

When we sincerely aspire for a goal, we will take help from any quarter and explore any means to reach our goal. We will listen to advice, read books, attend classes, practise techniques, make sacrifices, travel to far places, we will adjust our diet, daily schedule, exercise regime and sleep patterns – anything to help us reach our goal sooner.
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116: Folded Hands in Meditation (5) – Thy Will

Meditation is the withdrawal of our mind’s engagement with the outer world, to enter into our heart’s realm of peace, light and delight. Our hands are the executors of our will in the world. When we fold our hands, we both practically and symbolically withdraw our means of action from the outer world.
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112: Folded Hands in Meditation (1) – Body Language

What should we do with our hands during meditation? We do not meditate with our hands: yet our hands are extremely significant parts of our being – practically, energetically and symbolically – and what we do with them can tremendously influence our consciousness, actions and environment.
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111: To Dispel Unhappiness

Meditation and unhappiness are incompatible. If you can dispel unhappiness from your system before you sit down to meditate, your meditation will be freer, easier and more effective.
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110: Chasing Shadows

https://www.radiosrichinmoy.org/wp-content/uploads/media/110-–-Chasing-Shadows.mp3 Desire is a yearning to possess the unpossessable. It juggles chimeras and grasps at thin air while feasting on reflections in its castle in the sky. The world we sense around us is but...

109: Frustrated and Empty

When we do not get what we desire, we are left feeling frustrated and empty: if only our desire had been fulfilled, surely happiness would be ours and all would be well. Yet when we get what we desire, we are again left feeling frustrated and empty: somehow the fulfilment of our desire has not given us the happiness and satisfaction we had hoped for.
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108: The Ocean of Grace

Each life is a river flowing to the sea. From the perspective of the river, its current appears to be its own doing, its own driving force. Yet when we step back and view from a larger perspective, we see it is actually the ocean that is drawing the river towards it.
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107: The Swift-Flowing Current of Grace

Each life is a river flowing to the sea. The current of a river flows always strongest in its depths. This underling current is the guarantee that the river will reach its destination. When you look at the surface of a river, you may see little eddies and swirls flowing in many different directions. Rocks and snags initiate all manner of disturbances, convolutions and conflicts in the surface flow.
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106: The Tadpole and the Frog

A tadpole and a frog appear completely different creatures. Yet they are one and the same. A tadpole can live only in water. Like a fish, it uses its tail to swim around. A frog can live both in water and on land. For the tadpole to become the frog, it must first develop legs.
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105: Where are we Heading? (4)

You live the richest, most varied and fruitful life that any human could imagine. And yet … and yet … after all, you are still no closer to answering: Who am I? Why am I here? Where have I come from and where am I heading?
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104: Where are we Heading? (3)

In addition to the senses you had as an animal, you now have that most marvellous instrument of awareness – the mind. It is as though your world has just exploded in scope, variety and possibilities. The power of the mind to perceive, to analyse, organise, classify, quantify and control is dazzling and unparalleled.
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103: Where are we Heading? (2)

Eventually you become a huge tree, with magnificent strong branches and countless fluttering leaves, offering shade and protection to all and sundry, great and small. You bear flowers and fruits. You are admired by the world. You live a long, full and fulfilling life as a tree.
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102: Where are we Heading? (1)

To answer this question, let us embark on an imaginary journey. Immerse yourself, allowing no outside thought or distraction to enter. Sit somewhere where you can be quiet and alone. Assume your meditation pose, breathe calmly and close your eyes.
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101: The Red and the Green Lollies

Two little boys were extremely fond of a particular red lolly. Every day they would visit the corner store and purchase their supply, served in a white paper packet. They were agreed: nothing could equal these red lollies. They loved everything about them: their unsurpassable taste, texture, colour and shape.
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99: Evolution (2)

Up to now, our evolution has been unconscious, determined by some unseen force of nature. As long as our journey is unconscious it is bound to be fraught and haphazard, with many false starts, wrong turns and missed opportunities.
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98: Evolution (1)

In school we learn about evolution. We learn about how we humans have evolved from animals, most recently from apes and chimpanzees. We learn about Charles Darwin, his theory of the Evolution of the Species and of Natural Selection. When I was in school I readily accepted and subscribed to these theories as fact.
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97: The Six Blind Men

This is a traditional story… Six blind men lived together in a forest. They had heard rumours of the elephant, which they were not able to verify since none of them had seen the elephant. They agreed one of them should find the elephant and report back.
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96: You Want a Revolution?

Order reigns even in chaos; within order, chaos lurks. All outer phenomena bear the signature of hidden forces. If you want to achieve, influence or become anything, go to its source. We regard the landscape around us as a fixed anchor of our existence. Yet even solid rock is a veneer, a thin crust floating atop a slowly seething sea of molten magma.
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95: Bird in a Cage (3) – Return

Lost in your flight, your song and the thrill of freedom, you are now drawn not by what is below, but rather what is above. Tilting your neck upward, a radiant sky beckons as you bend your being up into its heart of infinite blue. The higher you fly, the brighter and fuller the hue until even its blue is dissipated into pure light as the all-real.
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94: Bird in a Cage (2) – Flight and Freedom

In a rush of light and air, instinctively your wings engage to keep you aloft. Dazzled, your world spins in a hurtling rush of colours, shapes, scents and sounds. You are in another realm. Around the garden you fly, drinking in the array of vivid colours and sweet fragrances. Giddy you rise beyond your own backyard to discover more gardens, vibrant and abuzz with the joy and industry of life.
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93: Bird in a Cage (1) – The Cage

This is a creative visualisation exercise. Sit in a quiet place, alone, where you will not be disturbed. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing for a few minutes, carefully regulating your breath to relax your whole body while calming your thoughts and emotions.
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92: Everything in a New Light

The world is a white wall. Shine a red light on the wall and it appears red. Shine a green light: it appears green. Like the wall, we perceive the world according to the light of our own consciousness. When we are sad, the world appears ugly: when we are happy, the world is beautiful. We shine our own light on the world, and so the world appears.
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91: Ten-Armed Goddess

Many of the Hindu cosmic gods and goddesses are depicted with multiple arms, each arm performing a different task, revealing a particular capacity or bestowing a gift or boon. We too can develop multiple arms. We too can become the 10-armed god or goddess. Our arms represent our capacities, manifest our talents and convey our gifts in the outer world; through our arms we build, create, reveal and offer.
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90: No Standing Still

Everything is in constant motion. Nothing ever stands still. Even the so-called laws of the universe are in constant flux. We are either jumping up, or falling down. We are breathing in, or breathing out; gaining, or losing fitness; growing, or decaying; learning, or forgetting. So it is with spiritual progress. There is no standing still: we are either moving forward or we are falling backwards.
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89: Expectation

“Peace begins when expectation ends.”
– Sri Chinmoy

Expectation hobbles our meditation. We are used to always expecting some result from any activity we engage in. Otherwise, what’s the point of the activity? Yet meditation is an activity like no other. Meditation is much more effective when it is practised with no expectation of any result whatsoever.
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88: Your Heartbeat

Your heartbeat is the constant of your life on earth. Whether you are awake or asleep, healthy or unwell, your heart beats within. No matter how you look or what you wear, your heart beats on. No matter what you are thinking or feeling, what you have been, what you are or will become, your heart beats. In happiness and despair, in victory and defeat, in glory and shame alike – your heart beats on regardless.
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87: Everything Takes Time

Meditation transforms us from within. This process is completely natural and normal. If you bring forth divine qualities – peace, light, wisdom, love and compassion – your outer life has to change for the better. Being a natural process, spiritual growth takes time.
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86: Brick by Brick

Every day we cannot enjoy a sumptuous feast. Some days we might have all the ingredients on hand for a full banquet, while at other times we might go to the pantry only to find dry bread. If that is all that is available, then on that day we won’t starve: we get by on dry bread.
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85: Surfing

Meditation is like surfing. A good surfer practises techniques and hones skills. Preparation is essential; preparing the board, preparing oneself, finding the right break at the right beach.
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83: The Piano Strings (3)

Like the piano, our heart has many strings, each tuned to a spiritual quality. Whereas the piano has strings for various notes, our heart has a “Love” string, a “Beauty” string, a “Peace” string and so forth.
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81: The Piano Strings (1)

Recently I was driving along the freeway, my mind a tangled knot of problems, anxieties and stresses of the day. Suddenly, with the distant mountain range for its stage, was an unutterably glorious sunset. Spontaneously I let out an “Ah!”, my mind’s petty preoccupations arrested and banished in a panoply of glory, beauty and serenity.
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80: Two Thieves

Swami Vivekananda often told this story… In ancient times, there was a most rare and precious jewel, renowned throughout all the lands. It had many owners over the years: it was traded for great riches; bestowed as a highest reward; even battles were fought over its possession. In time, this jewel came universally to be regarded as the most precious object in all existence.
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79: Aspiration

Aspiration is the single secret of meditation. Aspiration is the inner cry, inner yearning for something truer, higher, vaster, deeper, freer, ever more perfect and divine.
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78: Two Engines

We all feel there is something missing in our lives; something subtle, indefinable, somehow always beyond our reach. This sense of missing something makes us feel incomplete. This sense of incompleteness drives us, motivates us to fill this void, either temporarily, or once and for all…
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77: Birds in the Sky

Imagine thoughts during meditation are birds in the sky. You are not the birds. You are the sky. Perhaps the biggest hurdle we encounter in meditation, is the very first hurdle: the stream of thoughts flowing through our minds. What to do with these thoughts?
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76: Am I a Failure?

We know that the goal of meditation is to enter into a completely vacant, still and silent mind. Yet even after years of practise, I am still being bothered by thoughts and distractions. Does this mean I am a useless meditator, wasting my time? Not at all! To be able to silence the mind at will is a monumental achievement requiring an enormous effort of will, practise and persistence.
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75: All These Thoughts!

We are so used to our mind’s constant clutter, that we become inured to its incessant activity. The only time we notice so many thoughts is when we sit down and try to meditate. It’s as though all of a sudden there are all these thoughts at the precise moment we don’t want any! Of course the thoughts have been there the whole time…
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74: Morning Meditation – To Serve the World

If we are inspired to feed the hungry, we must first grow and harvest some crops. If we are inspired to give money to the poor, we must first earn the money. The same applies to inner wealth: peace, love, happiness and satisfaction­. We must first find and cultivate these qualities before we can offer and share them with the world at large. Many feel a calling to save the world. There is so much suffering, unhappiness, ignorance, anger, fear, stress and despair.
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73: Morning Meditation – Instructions for the Day

All of us have a sense that there is something or someone superior in wisdom and capacity – whether part of our own being or beyond us – to which or to whom we would ideally turn for guidance, instruction and inspiration. Be it a family member, friend or counsellor, a scripture, our spiritual heart, soul, God or some other deity, we all feel the need to turn to some source greater, deeper and more illumined than our own minds and emotions.
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72: Morning Meditation – Gliding from a Height

There is a widely held view that we are all either “morning people” or “NOT morning people”. Those who regard themselves as NOT morning people tend to find it more difficult to meditate successfully in the morning, and report better quality meditations in the evening.
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71: Morning Meditation – Your Identity Card

Next time you are angry, stressed, confused or depressed, look at yourself in the mirror. What do you feel from this face? Do you find it attractive – or otherwise? One time after you have had a good meditation, do the same: look at yourself in the mirror. What do you feel from this face?
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70: Morning Meditation – Tuning our Instrument

Every day is a new game, a new song, a new journey, a new examination. Our instrument is our consciousness. Just as an athlete prepares with stretching and warm-up exercises, a musician carefully tunes their instrument, a traveller packs their bags and a student studies for an exam, so our morning meditation prepares our consciousness so we are in shape for our daily game, song, journey and examination.
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69: Morning Meditation – Money in the Bank

Meditating first thing in the morning is like putting money in the bank.

When we have money in the bank, we can withdraw it to spend whenever the need arises. It is said: “Morning shows the day.” When we wake up we are relatively unconscious. What we do first thing after waking can hugely influence our state of consciousness for the remainder of the day.
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68: The Musk Deer

The original source of musk fragrance is the male musk deer, which produces the famous scent from a gland in its body. The story goes, that when the deer first becomes aware of this fragrance, it becomes enchanted, and starts to follow it, seeking its source. The deer walks around in search of this alluring wonder. No matter which way it turns, the fragrance remains always slightly out of reach. It cannot locate the source. Obsessed, the deer starts to run and run, madly pursuing the elusive unattainable.
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67: The Tiny Infinite

There is an infinite universe around us … and an infinite within. To embrace the infinite, it is customary to identify with something vast, like the ocean or the sky. You can instead choose something very small. The finite realm we inhabit, which dominates our present awareness, is a fine, flimsy gauze covering the infinite reality within and all around. Just as height and depth in meditation are ultimately the same; so the same truth is embodied within the vast, as in the tiny. Vast and tiny are conceptions of our mind; beyond the mind’s domain, vast and tiny alike dissolve in the One.
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66: A Thumbnail, a Black Dot

To meditate, we must focus the mind. Our tool is concentration. The better our concentration, the easier it is to enter into meditation. As a chef cannot work with a blunt knife, so one cannot meditate with a scattered and wandering concentration.
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65: Vaster than the Universe

Sit alone, somewhere quiet. Dive deep into your heart. We feel our spiritual heart in the region of our physical heart, in the centre of our chest, but deeper within. Imagine you are not your body, mind or emotions but only your heart of peace, love, light, joy and gratitude blossoming and spreading with the sweetest fragrance. You are all heart from top to bottom, within and without.
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64: Turning the Light On

When you go into a dark room, if you want light, you turn on the light switch. This is exactly how meditation works to dispel our inner darkness – our problems, worries, doubts, fears and anxieties. If you want light in a dark room, you don’t blunder about in the darkness, exploring all the dark corners in the expectation that somehow the room will miraculously become illumined.
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63: The Mountaintop

Sit alone, somewhere quiet. Focus on your breathing, bringing it under your conscious control, calming, slowing and making your breath one steady flow – in and out, in and out, through your nostrils. Breathe with your diaphragm, your upper body remaining perfectly still.
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62: The Power of Imagination

The present mind and heart are two entire ways of being, each seeing and feeling the world and ourselves differently. The mind craves control; the heart seeks love. We can only control what is fixed and certain; hence the mind’s mission to define, delimit and detain. The mind wants to reduce the universe so it can be possessed, known and dominated.
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61: The Mind and the Heart (7) – Sound and Silence

The present mind and heart are two entire ways of being, each seeing and feeling the world and ourselves differently. The mind craves control; the heart seeks love. We can only control what is fixed and certain; hence the mind’s mission to define, delimit and detain. The mind wants to reduce the universe so it can be possessed, known and dominated.
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60: The Mind and the Heart (6) – The Licensed Driver

It’s not that we don’t like the mind. The mind is not bad. It is potentially extremely good. It has just headed in a wrong direction. The mind is like an adorable little boy of the family who thinks it great fun to splash paint over everyone’s food – at every meal. At some point, his ways need to change, before we all starve.
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59: The Mind and the Heart (5) – The Ruler and the Sky

The mind and the heart perceive and comprehend reality differently. The mind’s modus operandi proceeds on the understanding that it is observing something separate from itself. The mind constructs models of reality based on evidence it receives from the senses and other sources. These models are constantly changing as new evidence comes to light, just as the mind itself is subject to constant change.
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57: The Mind and the Heart (3) – Unity and Division

The mind divides; the heart unites. Yesterday I was poring over some accounts; George was studying calculus – we were both much in our minds. We met and started a conversation. It happens that George and I like different colours, different kinds of music, different foods, movies and sporting teams. After 5 minutes, we made a long list – of all our differences.
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56: The Mind and the Heart (2) – A Coup d’Etat

Our mind is the servant that has become the master. Fire can be used to cook, to warm us and give light: or it can destroy. The mind is meant to be an instrument for our use, processing information from the senses, and applying its intellect for our own and the greater good. The mind is a wondrous power, an indispensable tool to aid us to live and operate in the world.
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55: The Mind and the Heart (1) – The Coalface of Progress

We have seen that of the five levels of our being, the lower three levels – body, vital and mind – are finite, while the higher two levels – our spiritual heart and soul – are infinite. The qualities we seek: peace, love, joy and satisfaction, all are infinite. All abide in our heart and soul. Yet our present consciousness is most dominated by our finite parts: in particular, our mind.
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54: A Unique and Dramatic Tension

At the heart of the human condition lies a contradiction which gives rise to a unique and dramatic tension. This contradiction is in the very character and attributes of the various levels of our being: body, vital, mind, heart and soul.
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53: Our Five Levels of Being (5) – The Soul

The soul is our source, the only part of us which is eternal – yet we have of the soul, only a vague awareness. We have become estranged from our own true self.If you ask people if they have a soul, most will immediately answer, “Yes”. But ask them to prove it; you will likely get a blank stare of bewilderment.
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52: Our Five Levels of Being (4) – The Spiritual Heart

Make a list of all the qualities you most treasure; the qualities you, and the world, need most urgently. Your list might include peace, love, oneness, joy, fulfilment, compassion, forgiveness, gratitude, wisdom, courage, strength, belonging, kindness, tolerance, patience, beauty, sweetness, perfection, satisfaction.
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50: Our Five Levels of Being (2) – The Vital

There are two convenient ways to represent a model of our five levels of being. One way is as a 5-story building, where the body is the ground floor and each succeeding level is the next floor above. This model is useful to understand some aspects of the relations between the various levels.
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49: Our Five Levels of Being (1) – The Body

We are complex beings… infinitely more complex than the physical Universe around us. While no model can ever adequately represent the multifarious levels of our consciousness, nevertheless for our purposes it is helpful to envision ourselves as comprising five essential levels of being.
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48: The Ultimate of Everything

The highest moments in our lives, the pinnacle experiences, are but glimpses of our deeper selves, our true nature. When we are swept off our feet with happiness; when we gasp at the sheer beauty of a sunset; when our heart melts in the smile of an innocent child; when we are lost in wonder at the towering majesty of mighty mountains or the twinkling mystery of far galaxies; when we thrill to pure poetic perfection; glow with the flame of inspiration or soar on the wings of song; when we are seized with the revelation of a new truth; when we exult in silent speechless bliss of rapt meditation – these moments are signposts to the Beyond, the eternal reality within.
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47: Just a Moment

Stop. Clear your mind and recall any most inspiring incident, experience or feeling from your past… Fully immerse yourself in and treasure this memory for a while. You will notice that what you have recalled, is just a single moment.
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46: A Hole in the Ground

When you walk past the building site of a new large building in the city, and peer through the window of the siding walls protecting the site, for months on end all you will see is a hole in the ground.
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45: Mantra in Practise (3)

Mantra is a most effective form of meditation practise because it simultaneously involves many levels of our being. The body is involved in creating the sound; we feel the vibration, resonance and cadence of the mantra in our very limbs.
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44: Mantra in Practise (2)

After chanting all the words on your list in turn, each for a minute or two, conclude with the mantra “AUM” for a while. Feel that the sound is emanating spontaneously from the depths of your spiritual heart.
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43: Mantra in Practise (1)

A mantra is the repetition of a phrase, word or syllable. The mantra is the focus of our meditation and the meditation itself. The mantra, its meaning, sound and resonance are at once an anchor for the mind and an invocation of a spiritual force, power or quality.
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42: The Manifold Munificent Mystery of Mantra

Human beings have a deep, mystic relationship with words. Words connect us with meaning, sound, vibration, and with Being itself. They are a means to communicate, to illustrate, to educate, to elevate and to liberate. Words link silence with sound, bridge Heaven and earth, marry the human with the Divine.
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41: An Anchor for the Mind

If a boat is left by itself on the ocean, it will be in constant motion: moving this way with the tides, that way with the wind, another way with a current. The boat itself has no say in where it goes, helpless before the forces of sea, sky and moon.
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40: Gratitude

Gratitude is a magical force in our lives. Just as light and dark cannot coexist in the same space, so gratitude and negative feelings cannot co-inhabit our consciousness. To dispel darkness, turn the light on: to relinquish negative thoughts and feelings, invoke gratitude.
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39: A Most Beautiful Child

If you have attained ultimate perfection, you do not need to change. If you are completely happy, you do not need to change. If you are already fulfilling your potential and your life’s highest purpose, you do not need to change. Yet who can say that he or she is already utterly perfect, happy and fulfilled? No-one.
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38: Change

If you have attained ultimate perfection, you do not need to change. If you are completely happy, you do not need to change. If you are already fulfilling your potential and your life’s highest purpose, you do not need to change. Yet who can say that he or she is already utterly perfect, happy and fulfilled? No-one.
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37: A Creative Visualisation

Close your eyes and imagine that you are sitting on a beach. You are alone. It is a perfect day. The beach stretches as far as your eye can see in either direction. Feel the sun’s warmth on your skin, the faint sea breeze on your cheek, taste a little salt in the air.
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36: The Ego: Dinosaur of the Era

As the dinosaurs of yore, our ego now proudly roams and rules the world… and as the dinosaurs found their days were numbered, so the time of the ego’s reign is now well and truly up. Consciousness is constantly evolving, within us and around us.
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34: Our Heart Flame (3)

You have become the flame. You are inundated with the flame’s light, purity, simplicity, beauty and delight. Because you have become the flame, and a flame has no mind, therefore you have no mind. Because you have no mind, thoughts and distractions find no foothold in you.
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33: Our Heart Flame (2)

Imagine your breath forms a bridge between your heart and the flame. Across this bridge, you and the flame offer yourselves unreservedly to each other. The flame is offering you its light, simplicity, purity and delight: you are breathing in and absorbing all these qualities as you inhale.
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32: Our Heart Flame (1)

Sit somewhere quiet where you can be alone and undisturbed. Place a candle in front of you, at eye level. Light the candle. We shall use the candle flame as the focal point for our concentration and meditation.
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31: Meditation as Magic

Magic tricks often rely on distraction: the magician will set up a scenario, then draw our attention away to something else. While we are watching what his left hand is doing, his right hand completes the “trick”, so that when we return our attention to the original scene, the “magic” is complete and we are duly amazed.

So is it with meditation.

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30: A Flower-Heart

For this exercise you will need a fresh flower.
Sit somewhere quiet where you can be alone and undisturbed. Either place the flower in a vase or hold the flower by its stem in front of you.
Gaze at the flower with your eyes half-open, half-closed, so that there is little else in your peripheral vision.

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