These guidelines apply to all of the meditations offered on this website.
They will also be useful for anyone who is finding their own way to meditate and
wants an easy, natural meditation style.
Different postures affect
how the energy flows through the body and how alert the mind is in meditation.
For most meditations, we suggest sitting upright with the spine erect while still being comfortable. It is not necessary to get into a
precise or difficult posture to meditate! If you are uncomfortable or
straining to be in a certain position, you will not be able to relax completely.
Some meditations, such as our Walking Meditation, are done while active.
How long to meditate
Usually 15-30 minutes is a good meditation time, although if you are new
to meditation, you may want to start with 5 or 10 and build up. If you
meditate regularly, it can be helpful to meditate about the same number of
minutes each time.
(An exception is our
Meditation-in-Action which is done for longer periods of time while engaged
When to meditate
When you meditate will partly depend on what kind of meditation you are
doing and the purpose of the meditation. Although you can meditate at any
time, the ideal times are usually in the morning as a start to your day, or in
the late afternoon in order to unwind from the activity of the day and be
refreshed for the evening. If you do a meditation which energizes you,
it's better not to do it before bedtime! Meditations which are deeply
relaxing are best done on an empty stomach or at least a couple of hours after a
Thoughts arise spontaneously in the mind. They are a natural part
of meditation. The goal of meditation is to become more at ease, relaxed
and at peace with whatever is happening. Therefore, it is important to not
resist anything that comes in meditation, including thoughts.
Don't try to push out thoughts or resist them. Simply notice that
thoughts are present and let them go the way they come -- effortlessly.
When you find that the awareness has been caught up in a train of thought,
easily come back to the focus of your meditation. (This will vary
depending on the type of meditation you are doing. In a breath meditation,
for example, come easily back to the experience of the breath.)
It's important to understand that you have not made a mistake when thoughts
come or the mind has become absorbed in thought. It's a natural part of
meditation. The mind may get caught up in a "story" about what is happening in
our life, or even what is happening in meditation -- what has happened or will
happen. Likewise, we can let go of that. Don't purposely follow the
train of thought. Let it go. Let go of the meaning of thoughts.
Let thoughts be a meaningless activity in the mind!
Our experience of thoughts may change as we
As we disengage the gears of the mind, the mind has an opportunity to
settle down. We may experience more subtle levels of the thinking process.
Thoughts may become more vague, or may even be an intuitive felt sense of
something -- a knowing that does not get translated into words and concepts.
Allow this process of the changing experience of thoughts to happen.
Sometimes you may experience a kind of dream-like state, somewhere between
being asleep and awake. This also is a natural experience in meditation.
There may also be times when there is a state of "no thought". No matter
what happens just take it easy -- take it as it comes!
It's enjoyable to meditate in a quiet place, but it is not always
possible. All of the meditations on our website can be done in a noisy
environment. The key is to not resist noise. Don't try to ignore the
noise or to block it out. Simply let it be and continue with your
Everything is a part of meditation -- the noise, your thoughts about it, the
way the mind may start to resist it, the emotions that arise about it.
Treat everything that arises in meditation the same way -- let it be, let
Falling asleep in meditation
Hopefully in meditation we enter a state of "non-resistance". This would
include not resisting sleep if it comes. If we try to keep from falling
asleep, we are straining. The goal of meditation to establish a state of
ease. Therefore, if sleep comes, let it come.
As the body relaxes, it will take the opportunity for sleep if it is needed.
If you find that you fall asleep frequently in meditation, it may mean that you
need more sleep at night and is a good reminder to make sure you are getting
When we enter into a state of relaxation in meditation, strong emotions can
sometimes arise. This can happen for several reasons. When the mind
settles down in meditation, we may become aware of an emotion that has been
"under the surface" while we are busy in activity and focused on other things.
It may also be that the deep relaxation of meditation causes a kind of
"unwinding" or purification, so that any emotion that has been held in the body
is released. The meditative state can be much like the dream state in
which various issues are being processed.
If we are uncomfortable with a particular emotion, such as grief, the
tendency may be to want to push it out. Emotions are a flow of life
energy, and if we resist that flow, the energy becomes "stuck". If you
notice resistance to emotions, let the resistance go. Allow the emotion to
be experienced fully and the energy of the emotion can flow and resolve.
On the other hand, when a strong emotion arises, the mind may become very
busy interpreting it or dramatizing it with a story about it. If anger
arises, for example, the mind might pick up on something that happened in the
past, or imagine something happening now as the cause of the anger. This
involvement of the mind in the emotion intensifies and feeds it, and also
obstructs it from moving through easily. When we become aware of being
caught up in a train of thought or a story, let that go and bring the awareness
easily back to the focus of the meditation. (The focus will depend on the
meditation you are doing.)
If the emotion or thought is so strong that you cannot easily come back to
your focus (such as the focus on the breath), then simply allow the mind to feel
the emotion. Let the awareness locate a physical sensation in the body
that is associated with the strong emotion (or thought). Simply continue
to feel that sensation in the body. With the awareness easily on the
sensation, it will eventually dissolve and the mind will be free to continue
with the focus of the meditation.
If the meditation process is difficult in any way, read our
Many people find it easier to be
guided in meditation -- and use of our CDs will make it easier to achieve a
meditative state anytime.
Sleep Easy CD
guided meditation for sleep
Chakra Dhyana CD
opens the chakras, raises kundalini energy