28 February 2008

Compassion is the Gateway to True Love

The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honourable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

*Love for your mother, father and siblings is natural and organic. We can have love for our partner if we have one and love for past partners. To have unconditional or true love is to love other beings whether or not they love you or even like you.~dharma teaching.

True love is the answer to all problems, pain and suffering. If you have true love and compassion for your fellow man then you shall inflict no harm. Love is an earnest and anxious desire for and an active and beneficent interest in the well-being of the one loved. Yet, at times, you will feel a rage of anger, frustration and wish your fellow man ill not because you hate her but because modern views of compassion has taught us this.

Common definitions of compassion read like the following: a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering. There is a strong desire to 'get your point across' to the one loved to help them release their pain and problems. These definitions create the idea that compassion requires us to join another in their misery and can lead to you becoming angry and sometimes wishing them ill for making you feel so terrible. Does this really help anyone? We may need a definition of compassion that is more powerful. For true compassion we will have to expand our understanding so we don’t mistakenly create more sorrow from suffering.

Think of the modern definition of compassion is not true. Say to yourself: What if compassion does not allow us to feel the suffering or pain of another? What if compassion is simply the active expression of acceptance for the world and people just as they are?

In Buddhist practices sadness, sorrow, and pity are referred to as the near enemies of compassion. Being compassionate involves understanding the suffering of another without feeling sorrow or pity. When there are these emotions, compassion has turned into personal unhappiness and only adds to suffering. Feeling the emotional pain of another doesn’t relieve their suffering. In actuality it adds to the collective field of unconsciousness creating suffering.

An example of Buddhist logic:
If you see a peron suffering and unhappy then you would feel sad for her. Now there are two unhappy people. If two people saw the two unhappy people and took the same approach then there would be four people suffering over frustration and sadness. Four more people could feel saddened and frustrated by our plight and then there would be eight more unhappy.If we keep going in this direction the whole world would end up feeling sorrow and pity because one person was unhappy. As you see, now we have several unhappy people and most will agree that unhappiness is harmful and a form of suffering.

"Just as compassion is a natural effect of true love for just being, so ahimsa or ‘non-harming’ is a natural effect of compassion. If we feel true compassion and tenderness for the feelings of others, we will automatically take care not to do any action that might cause any harm or suffering. Therefore the most important quality that we should strive to cultivate is the true love to subside and rest in our natural state of self-conscious being." [from the Happiness of Being: The Teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana]

A Zen teaching:
Empathy Practice. The first step in cultivating compassion is to develop empathy for your fellow human beings. Many of us believe that we have empathy, and on some level nearly all of us do. But many times we are centered on ourselves (I’m no exception) and we let our sense of empathy get rusty. Try this practice: Imagine that a loved one is suffering. Something terrible has happened to him or her. Now try to imagine the pain they are going through. Imagine the suffering in as much detail as possible. After doing this practice for a couple of weeks, you should try moving on to imagining the suffering of others you know, not just those who are close to you.

A Buddhist teaching:
Compassion can take active forms - helping others who are having difficulties of whatever kind (mental, emotional, physical) - but can also be seen as a broad approach inherent in all that one does. Knowing that all beings are suffering in some way, compassion can become a permanent part of one's mindset. If something practical can't be done, then there is the inner feeling of concern for all beings and a desire for their suffering to be alleviated.

A Jainism teaching:
The teaching of ahimsa (non-violence) refers not only to wars and visible physicalacts of violence but to violence in the hearts and minds of human beings, their lack of concern and compassion for their fellow humans and for any other living being. Ancient Jain texts explain that violence (Himsa) is not defined by actual harm, for this may be unintentional. It is the intention to harm, the absence of compassion that makes action violent. Without violent thought there could be no violent actions.In a positive sense ahimsa means caring for and sharing with all living beings, tending, protecting and serving them. It entrails universal friendliness (maitri), universal forgiveness (kshama)and universalfearlessness (abhaya).

Compassion knows no limits; there are no exceptions. Compassion is continuing learning process. There is never a point when one can say "I'm compassionate enough" or "I'm done being compassionate with you". That way of thinking is not compassion. True compassion is infinite, it knows no boundaries.

Once we learn true empathy we can develop true compassion. Once we learn true compassion we can develop true love for our fellow man as strong as we love those close to us.

Wisdom, compassion, and courage are the three universally recognized moral qualities of men. - Confucius


20 February 2008

Music for the Soul

Music for your meditations is more than just going to Wal-Mart and picking up a CD of environmental sounds or the latest Yanni tunes. Finding the right music for your meditations is essential to the meditation process. It is about self realization and self expression. It is what guides you into new realms. It is what brings about the images that will carry you to the sacred place. That is the goal of meditation.

I have been asked on numerous occasions about recommended meditation music. I have spent the last 6 hours combing through music to give you my top picks. I have separated the music into 2 categories for easier choosing: Light Ambient and Dark Ambient. The Light Ambient music houses a list of various styles: Native American, Piano, Neo-Classical, Indian, Environmental, Celtic and so on. The Dark Ambient section is a list of darker sounds; a lot of Goths, Pagans, Vampires, Horror Fans and others prefer the dark or heavier sounds to meditate to.

For sampling the music I have recommended, 2 good places: Last.FM and Amazon.com. Most of the music can be bought at Amazon.com or through the artists own websites and scrobbled/sampled at Last.FM.

Most of the artists below have has several CDs to pick from. I have chosen my favorites from each artist to recommend to you for your meditations. This is just a very small list of wonderful meditation music to pick from. I can also tell you that if you are just in the mood for some good chill-out music, relaxing music to sleep by or need good music for your 'tantric connections' then this is a fairly good list of for your listening pleasure.

I have them listed in no particular order:

Light Ambient:

Artist - Album

Anugama - Shamanic Dream II
Dean Evenson - Healing Sanctuary
The World Of Osho - In Wonder: The Narrow Road to the Deep North
Osho Musicians - Ten Thousand Budhas
Pete Namlook - Air
Medwyn Goodall - The Grail Quest
Ben Tavera King & Eric Casillas - Hunting Magic
Dean Evenson & Soundings Ensemble - Soundings Tapestry
Kitaro - An Ancient Journey
David & Steve Gordon - Sacred Spirit Drums
Paul Schwartz - State Of Grace III
Kamal - Mystery Road
Anthony Miles - Even Wolves Dream
Bioshpere - Substrata
Tangerine Dream - Dream Sequence
Acoustic Alchemy - Early Alchemy
Genius Loci - Hortus Sanitatis
Harold Budd - Glyph
Jeffrey Koepper - Etherea
The Sushi Club - Sushidelic
R. Carlos Nakai - Earth Spirit
Chinmaya Dunster - Yoga On Sacred Ground
Tom Barabas - Piano Impressions
Aeoliah - Divinaura
Upanishad - Spiritual Chillout
Green Sun - Non-Complex
Ellis Hadlock - Pyramid Dreams
Rodrigo Rodriguez - Across the East
Sangit Om - The Feng Shui Effect
Palash - On a Gentle Shore
Bahramji & Maneesh de Moor - Call of the Mystic
2002 - River of Stars
Meditation - Food of Love
Thom Brennan - Silver
Sounds that Sooth - Silver Streams
Ravi Shankar - Enchanted Dawn
Al Gromer Khan - Turya
Deva Premal - Embrace
Parijat - Buddha Garden
Vangelis - Antarctica
Enigma - Love Sensuality Devotion

Dark Ambient:

Artist - Album

Paan - Phosphor
Vestigial - Aeon
Abandoned Toys - The Witch's Garden
Rapoon - Cidar
Lull - Continue
Necrophorus - Gathering Composed Thoughts
Atum - Where are you Europe?
Midnight Syndicate - Born of the Night
Bruno Sanfilippo - Visualia
Hans Christian - Phantoms
Nox Arcana - Carnival Of Lost Souls
Arcana - Dark Age of Reason
Robert Rich - Trances / Drones
Lustmord - Heresy
Kevin Braheny - Desert Solitaire
Mathias Grassow - Prophecy
Instincts - The Mystery Visions
Dargaard - Eternity Rites
Funeral Catering Service - Graveyards & Hilltops
Post Scriptvm - Sea Green Series
Coph Nia - Shape Shifter
Dead Voices on Air - Shap
Crassus - These Darkening Days
Steve Roach - Artifacts
Kilvo - Take Me To The Castle In The Sky
Felixdroid - Odd Dots and Squiggles
The Future Sound of London - Cascade
Henri Seroka - Celtic The Music Of The Kells
Project Divinity - Divinity
Dark Sanctuary - De Lumière et d'Obscurité
Mystical Sun - Deeperworlds
Bardoseneticcube - Strange Various
Algol - Searching for Inner and Outer Void
Kammarheit - The Starwheel
Gustaf Hildebrand - Primordial Resonance
Entheogenic - Spontaneous Illumination
Ophelia's Dream - All Beauty Is Sad
Zoviet France - Decriminalisation Of Country Music
Ultra Milkmaids - Music For Dreamachine

16 February 2008

Animal Abuse Cases

Animal cruelty seems to be on the rise. Abuse cases are soaring. Being an activist for animal rights, I decided to provide you some links today to the latest stories and updates. The links are only a small handful of what I receive daily and gives you an idea of what I'm fighting so hard to stop - ANIMAL ABUSE! I realize this isn't much of a blog today... but this needed to be shown here because of the way I feel towards animal abuse. Thank you readers for understanding.

If you would like to help for FREE then please click on these pictures. All it will cost you a minute or two a day to click - no money involved.

Warning: Some of the pictures and videos provided in these links are graphic.

Paris Hilton’s Pets Are Being Monitored By L.A Authorities

Dogs Kicked and Beaten, Caught on Videotape

Video Footage for the above: Dogs Kicked and Beaten

Macao Teenagers Detained for "Barbecuing" Cat

Pet Store Performing Surgery Without Anesthesia

Polar Bears Lose in Big Oil Auction

2 Arrests In Calif. Animal Abuse At Slaughterhouse

Starved Dog Dies in Arms of Rescuer

Musher Charged With Neglecting Dogs

Update: The Owner of a Mt. Pleasant Animal Rescue Shelter Was Charged With Six Dog Law Violations

Update: 2 Charged With Animal Cruelty in Cat Case

Zoo 'Shoot to Kill' Action Out of Order

Horrific Case of Dog Cruelty

Man Accused of Drilling Holes in Dog's Head Pleads Not Guilty

Woman Explains Why She Drowned Her Cat

Plea Bargain for Couple Who Drowned Cat in Bucket

One Of Worst Cases Of Animal Abuse, Humane Society Says

An East Ridge Man Is Charged With Two Counts of Animal Cruelty

Twenty Pit Bulls Neglected, Drugs Seized

10 February 2008

Tips for the Week Ahead

Smile and Laugh this week.

Laughter and humor are great medicine for a healthy life. Research shows that healthy and loving relationships are strengthened by the magnetic ability of laughter to bring people together and help them bond. Evidence also shows that laughter elevates your mood, increases intimacy, reduces certain stress hormones, boosts the immune system and lowers blood pressure.

Laughter helps to remove the negative effects of STRESS, which is the number one killer today. More than 70% of illnesses like high blood pressure, heart disease, anxiety, depression, frequent coughs and colds, peptic ulcers, insomnia, allergies, asthma, menstrual difficulties, tension headaches, stomach upsets and even cancer, have some connection to stress.

Take time time to reflect.

When you reflect back to the other person what they have said, you are showing them not only that you have heard and understood them but that you are also interested in them and what they have to say. This demonstrates connection with them, affirms their identity and hence increases bonding. We like people who are interested in us and who stroke our identity.

By selectively reflecting only those things in which you have a particular interest, you communicate your preferences and concerns to them. This can help develop the conversation as, if they realize this, they will also talk more and question you more about these things, thus steering the conversation in the direction that is of interest to you both.

Reflecting information tends to get you more detail about the area reflected as the person picks up the cues you send them about your interests. Reflecting can thus be a subtle form of probing.

When you reflect something back to a person they have to think again about it. In that internal musing that you create in them they may well increase their own understanding of what is being discussed. Likewise, when you paraphrase with different words, this new angle may also build understanding.

Reflecting what is said can also help the other person take responsibility for what they are saying and about the topic in question. Reflecting also helps the other person own their emotions, particularly when you reflect their emotions in a neutral way whereby they feel able to accept what has happened.

Spend extra time with your family.

A family's "core" leisure activities (those that are typically everyday, low-cost, home-based activities such as playing board games, playing in the yard, gardening and watching television together) were related to the family's cohesion (“the emotional bonding that family members have toward one another”). Both a family's "core" activities and their "balance" activities (those that are novel experiences and require a greater investment of time, effort, planning and money--such as vacations, special events, and sports activities) were related to the family's ability to adapt.

Share what you love …your special hobby or talent …with your child, spouse and/or parents. Individual interests bring families closer. Because the rewards of a strong family are enormous and last a lifetime, it is so important to make time for family time. An easy and enjoyable way to do that is to play together as a family, such as family games, family sports, eating out, window shopping, picnic, weekend camping trip or even watching a movie.

*Sources: Changing Minds, Laughter Yoga, and R.B. Zabriskie

08 February 2008

3000 credits?

This is a special post to tell you about the Entrecard Contest. Fun and easy to enter! If you are a member of Entrecard then enter today for your chance to win:

  • 1st prize winner : Takes away 1000 credits
  • 2nd prize winner : Takes 700 credits.
  • 3rd prize winner : Takes 300 credits.
*The deadline to enter for the contest is Feb 29th 2008 midnight. The contest will run until 1 march’2008 and the winners will be announced within the first week of march.

*Full details of the Entrecard Contest can be found here: Entrecard Contest : 3000 credits giveaway

For those not holding an Entrecard - I can tell you from experience that it's a great way to find interesting blogs and sites. A fast easy way to recieve viewers [with possible chance for subscribers] and a great way to meet new people. I do recommend Entrecard!

As far as the contest - I'm entered!

07 February 2008

Love is Key

Love holds the Keys to all Healing.

To live a fuller, healither, and richer life - Learn to Love. Nothing will benefit you more biochemically, physically, mentally, spiritually or emotionally than Love.

Love is something we all search for; our bodies crave it, our spirits need it. When we experience it, there is a "euphoric high" that our sences feel - a sort of bliss, happiness and power that cannot be explained. We bask in the warmth of the blanket that surrounds us with caring, hope, gratitude, comfort, trust and a general sense of well-being. In fact, feeling and knowing love sets off a complex series of events within our bodies that brings about general good health.

There have been numerous studies that prove does improve our health. The studies go well beyond a male-female relations [ie. marriage] but looks at social connections, pets, beliefs and many other areas. In other words, the studies go well beyond 'being in love'.

Love is a high frequency emotion compared to Hate which is a rock bottom low frequency emotion. Love helps us to over come obstacles, fears, disappointments, low self-esteem, depression as well as over turning our hateful feelings and it's negative effects. In some cases, Love is mind-over-matter - meaning a person has to work on Loving Techniqes to feel the power and health benefits of Love. A good example of this: those that litter the Earth, criminals, abusers and the list goes on.

Love is the Heart Charka. It is the Soul. If one can heal the heart then they create a balance that is much needed in todays world. Healing the heart will release emotional bondages or baggages we carry from birth - experienced in the world in the Physical Realms or 3D. Your soul seeks seperation from the polar opposite, it spends a lifetime trying to over come pain, suffering, greed, hate and other negative experiences in the Physical World.

Romanitc Love is a part of our lives, but is only a quick fix and rarely permanant. Most all of us knows the quick rush of adrenaline we get from 'falling in love' - but it doesn't last forever. Love is more than Romantic and one should seek other sources and ways to love. I have seen depressed people who are in-love, their souls are lurking for something more permament. They have not learned to find the love their souls seek and remain unhealed. The best love for healing is mixed with compassion, acceptance, understanding, help, forgivness, and gentleness.

Studies conducted at the Institute for HeartMath in Boulder Creek, California, confirm the health-improving and life-affirming effects of love on the human body. By studying the heart's rhythms, researchers there have discovered that when we feel love, or any positive emotion such as compassion, caring, or gratitude, the heart sends messages to the brain and secretes hormones that positively affect our health.

"Our heart rate changes with every heartbeat," Rollin McCraty, director of research at the Institute of HeartMath, explains. "It creates patterns we call heart rhythms." Researchers see the difference in heart rhythms easily when study participants wear portable recorders that allow researchers to monitor their heart rhythms as they go about their day. These rhythms provide "a window" into the inner workings of the communication system between the heart and the brain.

McCraty believes the heart actually monitors the blood stream for hormones and translates the hormonal information into neurological information, which cascades up into the higher brain centers, like the cortex. "If we feel love and compassion, that boosts our immune system." ~McCraty said.

Love is a feeling. Love is an attitude. Love is an action. Love is a choice.


Enlarge your understanding of Love: Love is more than Romance. Love is more than a good feeling.
You do not have to agree with someone to act with consideration and compassion.
You do not need to be attracted to someone to show a loving attitude.
Love will motivate you to sacrifice for others and not expect any person gains or benefits from it.
Locate your source of love. Is it more than a source of pleasure?
Empathy is a good starting place to learn love.
Express your Love. Learn to speak and write words of Love.
Get involved in your community and/or online communites.
Share your resources with a needy person.
Give to your favorite charites or organizations.
Adopt a pet from your local shelter or one that is living in the streets.
Do not make it your goal to have the world love you. Not everyone will love you.
Offer gifts and perform thoughtful deeds with no ulterior motivation.
Give money or buy dinner for a homless person.
Meditate and/or Pray for greater understanding of Love.
Participate in you Grove, Coven, Synagogue, Church or other places of faith.
Make someone laugh or smile.
Offer a helping hand when and where you can.
Thinks good or positive thoughts.
Give good constructive critisim when needed.
Plant a tree.
Take time for yourself and your needs.

Verses and Poetry:

Power and permanence of universal Love: The essence of a verse from Saadi

I am in love with that mysterious power that made us all,
The power in absence of which the heavens would fall.
I get uplifted when I think of that power,
And when I don't my life is indeed very dull.

A verse from Hafez, 'dar tarigheh eshgh baazi..' where the power of love changes pain to pleasure:

The pain of your love is such a great pleasure,
For which I'll never need a preventive measure.
The happiness I find in my humble hut,
I do not exchange with any worldly treasure.

Rumi [who equates the power of God and power of love that is within each of us.] Rumi addresses those who think the only way to reach God is through rituals and going to special places.

O' seekers of God, your are it, you are it,
God is within you, just admit, just admit.
You look silly looking for what you have not lost,
God and you are one, just admit, just admit!

I often recall my frequent visits to our Saadi's tomb when I was teaching in the lovely city of Shiraz.
I especially recall the verse engraved on the iron gate of the tomb:
'zeh khaakeh saaieh Shriaz booye eshgh aayad, hezaar saal pas az margeh oo garash booi.':

You will detect a fresh fragrance of love from this earth,
If you exhume Saadi a thousand years after his death.

Rumi verses

Love can make your bitter moments sweet,
Love can sweep your beloved off its feet.

Love can turn your copper into gold,
Love can multiply your gold a thousand fold.

Love can turn your vinegar into wine,
Love can make a devil into divine.

Love can cure your incurable pain,
Love can make the sunny skies rain.

Love can make a plowshare out of your sword,
Love can make you happy when you're bored.

Love can create happiness from your blues,
Love can intoxicate you without booze.

Love can make poison be your cure,
Love can make your polluted waters pure.

Love can make a serpent's venom a salve
Love can render a have-not into have.

Love can squeeze oil out of your stone,
Love can vaporize chill from your bone.

Love can turn your vice into virtue,
Love can make all your dreams come true.

A warning on abusive and excessive or wasteful lifestyle.

Knowledge empowers you to perceive what you see,
So that you won't go on a binge and spree,
You are slave if you cannot harness your desires,
Even if you were born in the Land of the Free.

Saadi the corrupt version of which is called globalization these days. That verse starts as 'bani aadam azaayeh yekdigarand...':

Regardless of color, creed and shape of our face,
We are members of one body called Human Race.
If one member is in pain and I don't offer a solace,
Within the Family of Man, I don't deserve a place.

Hakim Omar Khayyam on love and enthusiasm for life. In Farsi this starts as'ay vaay bar on del keh dar oo soozi nist...'

Life without love is a dark day or a bad news,
As is a headlight at night without any fuse.
Each day you spent without love and hope,
Is a day wasted, a day that was of no use.

Omar Khayyam's verses: When I find a stranger a better friend than a relative

Strangers are relatives if they befriend,
Relatives are strangers when they offend.
A poison is a medicine if it cures,
Cures are poisons if they rend.

Another one from Omar stresses persistence and hard work in achieving seemingly impossible goals.

Your success in life depends on how you fare,
In working hard and surviving a despair.
For unless the comb did not have a hundred teeth,
It could not penetrate a beloved's hair.

Omar Khayyam.

An unhappy raindrop said Look at Me,
I'm not even the size of a pea.
As it dropped into the sea it said,
Look everyone, I am the sea.

02 February 2008


My personal version of meditation is similar to the posts I made earlier: How to Meditate. The earlier post was to show other methods of the meditating technique. Below is my variation of meditation. I add and delete things when necessary to my routine, but it will give you a basic outline:

1. Make sure all is quite - no disturbances. Turn off all telephones, TVs and such. Make sure no one is home or they are alerted to your request for peace and alone time. [Maybe they are reading, sleeping, on the computer - just doing something quite]. Make all pets happy - a barking dog or cat fight will surely break your concentration.

2. Lower all lights. Daytime - cover the windows for an ambience and to tone down the bright sun. Nighttime is my favorite time for meditation.... no traffic, worries about a knock on the door etc.

3. Turn on Ambient, Meditation, Experimental, Environmental or Classical music - very low - helps me to relax and focus. The sounds help to 'drive' my experiences while in the meditating mode. ~Once in awhile I choose no sounds for a different effect~

4. Light some candles. If you are a believer in symbolism and colors you may want to consult your color chart to coordinate with the type or focus of your meditation. White is always a good choice for anyone or any belief ~non believers of color symbolism included~. I usually light 3 or 5 candles [odd numbers]

5. Incense, heated and scented oils or potpourri is used. Again, those believing in symbolism may choose to use symbolic scents for their ritual. I use symbolic scents for specific meditations; my general meditations I use my favorite scents. For me, Woods, Spices and/or Musks is the best. You choose what is right for you and your meditation.

6. A series of light, slow stretches to loosen and relax the muscles. This will also help 'free the mind'.

7. Sit on the floor in the classic Lotus Position. Arms in a position most comfortable to you. Eyes closed. Breathe slowly and deeply.... every breath will become deeper and slower.

8. Clear the mind of any and all thoughts. I usually focus on the darkness or blackness that one sees when the eyes are closed. Other times, I will focus on the music to help 'carry me to my place of meditation.' Yet on other occasions I'll picture a lotus flower, lake, or even the stars.... anything to get the mind of the bump and grind of daily living and to start meditation.

9. Now that the mind is clear the journey begins. Experiences vary from person to person and mediation to mediation. You never know where you'll end up: a beautiful magical forest, under the ocean, dancing in the clouds, complete darkness, a room full of candles, a rose garden - the possibilities are endless.

Interesting to note that sometimes you may hear sounds, voices or someone talking directly to you! Messages or Omens are sometimes what they are. Other times it's help with a particular situation. Some may be deeper - telling you more about yourself or others. Listen closely!

The images you see are important too. They are the for the same reasons as sounds/voices. Meditation is very similar to the dream state. Not everything has a meaning... but the things that stand out most to you are meaningful. Remember meditation is more than just relaxing. The beginner may find that that's all they are getting out of the first few meditation experiences but will soon learn otherwise.

10. When coming out of the meditative state, do so slowly. Do not open the eyes fast, do not jump up and or move in any quick way. Once the meditation is over - slowly open the eyes. Breathe and relax. A few easy, light floor stretches is good before standing up.Easy does it again when before standing up. This will help to prevent 'shock' and stop you from being thrown back into the state you were in before the meditation took place.

My personal choice - after the eyes are opened, breathing is back to normal and the stretches are over - I will sit and think about all that I have experienced in my meditations. Keeping a journal of it? Now is the time to write down.

*I usually have a glass of water or juice beside me and some fruits/veggies/nuts waiting for me to complete my meditation cycle. While thinking about the meanings and writing down the experiences I will enjoy my mini healthy snack.

11. Now that this is over with - you should feel relaxed, peaceful, energy soaring, creative juices flowing and happy. The 'third eye' should be clear, mind-body-spirit balanced and the emotions almost euphoric. ~Very seldom do I have a bad or scary meditation experience, but just like a nightmare, it does happen. Just a word of warning.~

12. Ready for the world and what life has dish-out for another day. Hopeful that it is as good as I feel after my meditation journey. May this will help a beginner to understand another method and view of it.

~Terrah Dawn

How to Meditate

Relaxation Through Meditation
[Author Unknown]

My preference would be to call meditation relaxation – conscious relaxation, chosen relaxation. These are words that are more universally understood, more comfortable. Constantly working toward the goal of discovering my own ability to reach a state of serenity, I have learned to meditate.

Meditating is actually easier than you might imagine. Most of us have dabbled in meditation by participating in conscious relaxation. Maybe during an exercise class or to manage pain at the dentist or anxiety before a test. We start by paying attention to our breathing. The practical effort to focus completely on our breathing takes our minds away from the "mind clutter" that constantly tries to invade our mind and eliminate feelings that will lead to a time of calm. With repeated effort the goal of clearing your mind – to think of nothing, does occur and the process of meditation takes on its own energy. The result is, and I guarantee this, peace, serenity, calmness, eventually opening yourself to new insights.

Meditating for Life

Too much stress, stress reduction, chill out, let it go, detach – familiar phrases to all of us. Our world is fast, fun and exciting. It is also challenging, trying, demanding and frightening. These two sides of our lives produce stress, emotional reactions, anxiety, worry and anticipation. Our bodies and minds can tolerate only so much of any of these. After a while, each of us reaches a saturation point and the results become uncomfortable at best; for some it may be unbearable, even unendurable.

No magic pill is available to eliminate these feelings. The reality is, as the wise old man said, the answer is inside all of us. To manage these universal concerns we must go inside ourselves. Among the steps we can take is the learning and practicing of meditation.

What to Expect

With time and faith in the commitment to practice frequently, (daily meditating is ideal), during your meditation time you may "leave the moment." A feeling of separation exists where the mind is clear, clean and blank. You will still hear sounds around you, but they will not interfere with your meditation.

Sometimes you may weep -- you may not even be aware of what is making you weep. It is your own emotions having a voice of their own. Sometimes you may feel a smile across your face -- that is contentment showing itself. Sometimes you may fall asleep and awaken truly refreshed.

There is no right or wrong behavior during your meditation. It is your time for you. Everyone deserves this kind of personal attention. This is a self-care activity; loving oneself! Teach it to your children instead of a time-out in their room or corner. Teach it to your friends, family, anyone who will listen. We can share this gift and get back as we give. We are all better because of each person who meditates. The peace and joy felt by those who meditate enters the world for all of us as positive energy. From it the world is a better place. Imagine if we all practiced meditation!

How to Get Started with Meditation
By Bobbie Lieberman

Meditation: Practice the Art of Peace

"Calmness is the ideal state in which we should receive all life's experiences," writes Paramahansa Yogananda (1893-1952), founder of the Self-Realization Fellowship, in the book Inner Peace. Yogananda is regarded as one of the great spiritual teachers melding East and West. Through meditation, he writes, one can cultivate a wonderful inner quiet that will melt away stress and nervousness.

But to meditate, one must break away, however briefly, from the world. Turn off your cell phone and pager, disconnect the fax machine, shut down the computer and turn on the answering machine...allow no interruptions during this special time.

Meditation is the perfect antidote for the constant intrusion of technology in our lives. In fact, recent research has shown that meditating twice per day for about 20 minutes can actually reduce blockages in your blood vessels, significantly lowering the risk of sudden death by heart attack or stroke.

Here are a few tips to get you started:

* Where Should I Meditate?

You may wish to set aside a special corner of one room, your own private sanctuary, a calm, quiet and peaceful place. You might furnish the area with objects or icons that have spiritual meaning for you, developing a little altar or shrine. Use what will put you into a contemplative frame of mind. You may want to enlist the help of Mother Nature. Spend time at the ocean listening to the surf crashing upon the rocks...walk through a shaded forest trail with a cathedral of trees overhead...stand near a stream with water playing over the rocks or a waterfall...or watch the moon rise or birds fly overhead.

* How Should I Sit When I Meditate?

Although the classic posture is to sit with legs folded and hands resting quietly on the lap or the knees, the key is to find a way of sitting that is comfortable for you. And remember, you can meditate anytime, anywhere...even driving in your car.