A couple of days ago we gave a response to the question “What are one of the first things to do when one wants to begin a meditation practice?” and we ended the blog post with the question “How long should I sit for?”

Here’s our response to that question.

Well if you’ve never meditated before then I suggest just one minute. It’s a good place to start and it is an achievable goal for most people.

What should I do in this one minute?

When you are seated, firstly, tell yourself that you have no where to go and nothing to do for the next one minute. And that all you have to do is be aware of yourself sitting there having met your appointment. Congratulate yourself for doing this. You have now begun the process of training your body to be still by forcing it to be in one place for a period time. You are exercising your will over your senses, over your body and mind. In order to go within in meditation it is essential that our body and mind be still.

For the first week of doing this just be mindful of your breathing. Observe your every in and out breath during that one minute.

In our next pot we’ll look a little deeper into the breathing. For now, you know what to do.

Here’s a link to previous FAQs on meditation.

 

What are one of the first things to do when one wants to begin a meditation practice?

I often get asked this question. One of the first things you should do is to make an appointment with yourself each day. The appointment with yourself involves sitting down for a period of time each day by yourself in a designated spot within your home.

This spot should be purely reserved for your meditation practice and nothing else. Make sure it is clean and free from clutter. Have a small blanket or mat which you can sit on. It is best to be seated on the floor cross legged. If you can’t do this then sit on a chair with a fairly firm surface.

Ideally you create a little shrine at this spot. You could have a small statue of Ganesha, a candle which you light and and burn an incense as well.

Unless you make time for yourself each day you are not going to be starting a meditation practice anytime soon.

Tomorrow we’ll explore the question “How long should I sit for?” and “What should I do during this time?”

 

Meditation Class in St. Thomas and St. John

This coming weekend I’ll be conducting a series of workshops in the US Virgin Islands. I would love for you to join me if you are on the islands. Below is the schedule of workshops plus links (click the workshop name) to further details on each of them.

St. Thomas
16 March, 7pm
Indian Cooking Class (Private Event)

St. Thomas
17 March, 9am to 1pm
Tools for Meditation Workshop

St. John
18 March, 9:30am to 12:30pm at the Westin Resort
Yoga and Meditation Workshop

St. John
18 March, 4:30pm to 6:30pm at the Westin Resort
Spiritual Tools for a Balanced Life

St. Thomas
19 March, 7 to 8:30pm
Satsang at the Ananda Nilayam

 

Today’s question on meditation comes in from Louise from the Philippines who asks “How do I concentrate better – I manage a good quality 5 mins at most with minor drifting but then my mind wonders massively after this…?”

The best way to learn how to concentrate better is to practice it more. We become good at what we practice. Know that the mind has no ability to discriminate between what practice is good for you and what is not good for you. If it did we’d all be excellent at concentration. The mind becomes good at whatever we practice. If we practice being distracted 10 hours a day then we become good at that. The same way, if a dancer wants to be part of the best ballet company then she would have to practice many hours a day. 

So, to be good at concentration you need to practice it more each day. In my workshops and spiritual adventures I share specific concentration exercises that can be integrated into your every day life to help you be better at concentration.

If you have questions on meditation please feel free to reach out to me. You can do so by sending your questions to me on email at info(at)vedicodyssey.com.


 

On the 7th of January I was asked “what are the techniques of meditation” and responded to that on the blog. The natural next question to follow from that was asked…which was “How do you know a meditation technique is good or not?”

It’s hard to know this answer if you are new to meditation. How would you know anyway if you’ve never tried it out long enough. Hopefully this can help shed some light on the topic.

Whatever meditation technique you choose should make sense to you. You should understand it thoroughly. A clear intellectual understanding is essential to make progress. How can you practice something well if you don’t understand it, right?

So make sure the technique you choose makes sense to you. It’s clear, practical and systematic. Its practicality allows you to develop your meditation skills slowly in your consistent practice of it.

If you don’t understand something about the meditation technique then ask questions about it. Understanding is essential. And whoever is teaching you this should be able to answer your questions logically and if they can’t then they should be able to direct you to a resource that can.

Hope this helps.

If you have questions on meditation please feel free to reach out to me. You can do so by sending your questions to me on email at info(at)vedicodyssey.com.


 

I received a question on email from Rupa in DC who asked “What are the techniques of meditation?”

There are many meditation techniques around. You should pick one that you resonate and feel comfortable with. Different techniques work for different people. Stick to it once you’ve decided on the technique and practice it consistently. Don’t continue to shop around and practice other techniques. In order to be good at something you need to remain focused on it. 

Pick a technique that is also systematic, clear and practical. Meditation needs to be approached in a systematic way if you want to make progress in it. 

Tune back for more questions and answers on meditation.

If you have questions on meditation please feel free to reach out to me. You can do so by sending your question to me on email at info(at)vedicodyssey.com.

 

Somebody asked me in a class recently a question that I have never been asked before. The question was “What is the purpose of meditation?” Strange, I thought at that very instant I heard the question, that it was a very obvious question but no one seems to ask it. Unless of course everyone knows the answer to it.

The highest purpose of meditation is to take your awareness from an external state of mind and go within yourself to experience the Self (God in the aspect of timeless, formless and spaceless known as Parasiva in the Hindu faith). The experience of doing so helps you to realize that you and God are one, inseparable.

Meditation also serves to help you become the master of your mind, body and emotions. Your mind, body and emotions are your tools. You are meant to be in charge of them. If you are not they will be in charge of you as is clearly visible in many people these days. Meditation teaches you how to be in control of your mind, body and emotions by helping you to realize that you are a soul in possession of these tools. 

These are a couple of the purposes of meditation. Needless to say meditation has countless benefits.

I conduct meditation classes in New York City and also in various places around the US, Caribbean and Australia. If you are interested in learning about meditation please feel free to reach out to me and you can do so by sending me an email to info(at)vedicodyssey.com.

The spiritual adventures that I conduct a few times a year are wonderful opportunities for personal growth and self discovery. I take the role of a spiritual guide or catalyst that teaches classes and create creative, fun, intimate and spiritually uplifting experiences along the way for my fellow travelers. Visit this link to learn more about these spiritual adventures.