In nearly every Tarot date I do, I include my client’s Meditative practice or Prayer in the reading. I do this because they are vitally important to maintaining true happiness. And although I spend time discussing this in readings, I never have long enough to discuss the great benefit of these practices in everyday life. So, let’s BLOG about it!
Meditation or spending time in what I call, “Prayer State” is vitally important to maintaining a positive mindset. A positive mindset should be the goal in everyone’s life. You can have a house that is beautiful, money in the bank, living the big life, but it all means NOTHING if you are deeply unhappy. Ask the celebrities who, “have it all,” but turn to drugs and alcohol because they are still unhappy. Basically, unhappy mind means an unhappy life.
Let us start by discussing “Prayer State.” I coined this term for people who use Prayer as a form of meditation. Prayer State is defined by a deep, meaningful period of time spent connecting your spirit to the divine through prayer. In Prayer State, you can prepare yourself for the day ahead, connect to the divine, and bring fourth peace from within your spirit. In Prayer State, do not fear asking the divine for things that will help you along your day; for example, peace and strength. These blessings are immediate and they are your right for being a spiritual being on a human journey.
There are many different types of meditation: Single-Focus, Analytical, Transcendental, Mantra, and what I call “Walking Meditation”… to name a few. In Single-Focus meditation, one focuses on a single thought or image that brings fourth something from within their life. In Analytical Meditation, you use reason and logical rationale to bring about peace of mind.
Transcendental meditation is a widely used method for developing the mind through repeating certain sounds. Mantra meditation is what I do and I have received great benefit from doing it. Finally, we come to something I call Walking meditation. This is when you can meditate while wide awake and going about your day.
Meditation is extremely important and should be done several times throughout your day, starting in the morning. Why is it important to begin your day this way? Because your mindset at the start of the day will determine how you go about the rest of your day. If your mind is right, fresh and free, you will be more resilient as you go about your day. Conversely, if you ignore this part of your day, your mind is already off balance and you are more likely to lose your goods over the smallest of things. So, please start your day, every day, with meditation or Prayer State.
How does one meditate? You begin by finding a quiet spot in your home and withdraw from any distractions… this includes your phone. I think we can all agree that nothing is more unsettling than the information that comes through Social Media, News, and gossip. The very worst thing you can do is start your day staring at your phone or watching the television.
After you have withdrawn from the distractions of the world, take a deep breath and begin. Your eyes should be soft and gently open. While it is best that your eyes be open, that isn’t the only way to start your meditation. Closed eyes make it easier to block the world around you and more quickly dive deeper into your meditation. The main goal is to focus so hard on meditating that you are indifferent as to what your eyes are doing. So, don’t make a big deal out of this. But ultimately, your goal is to meditate with eyes open so that you can achieve peace of mind while wide awake; fully taking in sensory information and stimuli. This is a key part of Walking Meditation.
Once you have achieved this step, breathe. Breathe in love, breathe out hatred. Breathe in positivity, breathe out anger. Breathe in joy, breathe out anxiety. Focus on your breath, slow it down and allow it to take you deeper into your meditation. This may take several minutes, but it is a vital step. Nobody achieved enlightenment by breathing like they have just swum the English Channel. Slow, steady, mindful breathing is best.
Next, you will need to decide what you would like to bring forth from your life. What are your options? I think the following are the most important traits to focus on: wisdom, compassion, courage, peace, forgiveness, love, and life-force-energy. Focus on each of these one at a time, until you embody them all.
If you need to conjure an image that helps you do this, that it fine. Many people use the Buddha, as he embodied all of these traits. Others use Jesus or Muhammad; especially, if they are using Prayer State as their form of meditation. I myself use an honorable object of devotion, or a Gohonzon; a scroll that embodies the very best of the Buddha and his highest teaching, the Lotus Sutra. I focus on the Gohonzon and repeat the Mantra, Nam Myoho Renge Kyo. Use whatever works for you! If you find that you do not need an external point of focus, develop an image that conjures compassion, patience, and love. Regardless of what works for you, devote all of your focus on that image or thought.
Do not allow your mind to be swayed by past or future events. Do not allow yourself to focus on things that seem beyond your control. Having said that, our minds are so clogged up with other stuff, it is hard to keep such determined focus. If your focus wavers, do NOT judge yourself or think you are failing at this practice. Instead, simply return to your image, thought, or point of focus. If you are just starting out meditating, this may prove to be the hardest part. The more you devote yourself to this, the easier it will be to maintain focus. Again, this won’t be easy and it will take effort. Stay calm and mindful, bringing your point of focus back to the forefront.
After you maintain this point of focus, allow yourself to be enveloped by it. Allow the harmony to sweep over your body. Allow compassion to wash away your indifference. Allow the joy to conquer your depression. Do this for an extended period of time. Don’t get a glimpse of greatness, think you’re done, and then move on with your day… Instead, sit with your joy, compassion, and forgiveness. Ingrain the goodness into your spirit, soul, and mind. You want to do this with such determination that you have stamped these wonderful qualities into your life.
During Single-Focus meditation, you would go one trait at a time. For example, if you need more forgiveness in your life, focus on forgiveness. Do not stop until you feel that forgiveness resonate throughout your entire being. Once you have achieved this, seal it into your spirt, and then move on to the next point of focus. If you are using analytical meditation, find reason why you need love, and peace of mind in your life and how you can live better by embodying them. Analyze what these things are and why the world would be a better place if we all lived in them. In Prayer State, do not stop praying until you feel the love, compassion, and joy.
Quickly, we’ll discuss Walking Meditation. Walking meditation is done in a similar way. You focus on what you need, breathe, and calm the mind, but you do it as you are going about your day. Say your boss is giving you Hell and you are about to snap. Immediately, stop yourself from losing it. Focus on them, find compassion for them, and then go on about your conversation. What if you struggle with road rage? Soften your eyes, breathe, keep both hands on the wheel and know that you WILL reach your destination and that this experience is only temporary. Is this easy? NOT AT ALL. But with more practice, you will find yourself happier and happier, no matter what happens throughout the day. Personally, I see something displeasing happening and I quietly chant to myself. I breathe, maintain awareness, and focus on bringing the meaning of that Mantra into my actions; right then and there. With enough practice, Walking Meditation becomes easier and easier.
Meditation doesn’t always need candles and incense. They are nice additives, but are not absolutely necessary. Similarly, Prayer State does not require a church, a Priest, and a Choir. When I chant, I light 2 white candles, make various offerings, I ring a bell… the whole 9! But, if I were without these things, it would not stop me from practicing. This is because I know that the goodness I seek is inherently present in my life. I know that I don’t need a building with stained glass windows and a room full of people to bring forth my highest potential for greatness. The same goes for you, you are no different. The goodness, peace, love, and joy you seek are already inside of you. Reach into your spirit and bring them out!
In closing, I hope that this has helped you understand meditation a little better. I hope that you take my advice and start your day by bringing forth the best version of yourself. I hope that you take these various forms of Meditation into your life, incorporate them, and allow them to help you make your life better. At the very least, I hope that this entry brought you peace and closer to your ultimate happiness.
All My Love,
P.S. At the end of your day, you should always pray or meditate on the gratitude you feel for making through another day. Doing a morning meditation and an evening meditation will bring a rhythm to your life! Close your day and open your day like this, you will thank me once you have accomplished it!