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Meditation: The Most Misunderstood Word

by Lou Valentino

Could you imagine after taking your first breath at birth, your parent quietly whispers a sacred sound (Mantra) in your ear and smiles at you.

From the start of your life, you are listening to a sound that echoes through your mind, body and spirit that will lead you to enlightenment. The full potential of the mind, heart and soul allowing your body to reverse the aging process and allow your lessons in this lifetime to be handled with ease and grace.

I started meditating when I was 20 years old. The first 20 years of my life would create enough scars to leave me feeling damaged form the inside out. Like most of you, our childhood did not start off with sacredness but often violence in one form or another.

Now, at the age of 62, I have been meditating every day, twice a day, for 42 years. And even thou the practice of Transcendental Meditation has saved my life in many ways; I still know some of my deep insecurities from childhood and adulthood need more time to fully heal.

Do not let anyone fool you with the latest technique to heal everything in minutes. It takes time if you did not start off from the beginning of your life being born in a family of yogis. Krishna says if you stick with your practice you will be reborn in a family of yogis. That is the start of this article. My next lifetime.

Meditation has gotten a terrible reputation of being difficult. I developed “Inner Grace Meditation” based on all of education and direct experience over the last 42 years. It is effortless, natural, easy, and simple. This is the subtle infusion of energy which requires no concentration or contemplation.

This leads me to explain the 3 different categories that mediation techniques fall under.

Concentration, Contemplation, and subtle infusion of energy. All techniques are effective, but some are not as difficult.

Concentration techniques are focused on some object of perception or on the breath. This could be starring at a candle, a geometric mandala, tip of nose just to use a few examples.

Contemplation techniques repeat things over and over. Affirmations, listening to a favorite teacher discuss spirituality, listening to sacred sounds to name a few.

Subtle infusion techniques do not have any effort at all. Sound is the chosen vehicle to quiet the mind down and withdraw from one’s environment. Sound effects all five senses simultaneously.

Therefore, sound becomes a highly effective tool for allowing the mind to settle down and the body to go into a deep state of rest that is deeper than deep sleep. The mind remans awake while the body is in a deeper state of rest than deep sleep. This is a unique state of consciousness other than waking, dreaming, and sleeping.

A teacher once said, someone started a rumor centuries ago that mediation is difficult, he didn’t know what he was talking about.

In the yoga system there are 8 limbs and the last 4 limbs deal with meditation. These limbs are called “Samyama”.

Less violence, improved health, improved relationships, stronger immune system, lower blood pressure, reversal of ageing and experiencing other states of consciousness to be fully human are the benefits of meditation.

After having spent so many years working with the Transcendental Meditation organization for various reasons, I did not want to become a TM teacher. Why?

I felt the simple practice of meditation was surrounded by so much religious tone. I love the religious tone with my Sun/Mercury casimi conjunction in the 9th house of religion, but I also knew that not everyone was motivated this way.

I created “Inner Grace Meditation” for those who wanted an effortless experience, which is the basis of TM, but without any secretive initiations. Just the simple practice of allowing the mind to settle down and experience pure silence. The peace that passeth all understanding.

The sounds (mantras) used are very ancient. Thousands if not centuries old. I select one for the individual or group I am teaching based on the birth information of that person or that day and time of a group event.

The subtle infusion is about letting go and allowing the law of gravity to take you deep inside. This is a vertical experience and the sound is mentally brought to the mind like any other thought. You effortlessly sink down.

The other practices are more of a conscious effort that needs some form of focus or attentions. These are the horizontal experiences. You will settle down with this type of meditations but not as deeply as focus is required in some form.

Could you imagine starting off at birth with meditation? What a wonderful world it would be.

Mediation is a comfortable pair of shoes, but you still must do the walking. Walking on 2 legs of life is the subtle infusion of energy and the mindfulness focus of each moment in your waking life. All great spiritual teachers have called this an integrated state of life.

This is what I wish for every human being to have. The easy and simple practice of meditation and the fullness of life as they grow in their daily activities.

Mediation has been the most misunderstood word over the centuries. Hopefully, this article I wrote can help you the reader to understand the different types and how they all can work for you to bring life into balance.

A world filled with balance while we learn rather than chaos, violence and choices made we regret later hoping that history will teach us not to walk down that path again.

A better world is here. Daily practice of meditation is just as important as brushing our teeth, feeding our bodies, bathing our bodies, or achieving our life’s dreams.

The movie on the cinema screen is always changing. It is the cinema screen that never changes. Silence is our best friend we have. It never judges you and it will never betray you. It is the foundation of life.

Thank you taking the time to read my article. Namaste.

Lou Valentino is a professional teacher of meditation as well as a professional astrologer giving readings in both Western and Vedic astrology. Visit his website at www.yogavisionaries.com

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