Part 1 – Introduction to Meditation
Course textbook – The Wings of Joy by Sri Chinmoy
What is joy?
It is a bird that we all want
It is the same bird we all love
To see flying.
True inner joy is self-created.
It does not depend on outer circumstances.
A river is flowing in and through you carrying the message of joy.
This divine joy is the sole purpose of life.
Poems from: The Wings of Joy by Sri Chinmoy
“Breathing into the Heart Centre. Please breathe in and hold your breath for a couple of seconds, and feel that you are holding the breath, which is life-energy, in your heart centre. This will help you to develop your inner meditation capacity.”
Extract from Meditation by Sri Chinmoy
Imagine that you can see your breath entering your nose and slipping slowly and silently down into your lungs. Feel your breath is filling your chest cavity, energising your entire body. Keep your awareness in the centre of your chest. Imagine that you are in the centre of your own chest. Observe your breath coming in and bring with it all its positive energy. Then watch as your breath is exhaled carrying away negative feelings and emotions and even thoughts. Try to stay centred in your chest all the way through this exercise - keep your awareness in the centre of your chest.
Key points of exercise
Feel your awareness is in the centre of your chest.
Observe your breathing in a relaxed and detached way.
Do not force your breathing.
Purpose of this exercise.
To slow, calm and relax your breathing – this in turn helps to calm and quieten the mind, to prepare yourself for meditation. It is important that our breathing is calm and relaxed before we attempt to focus on the next level which is single pointed concentration. We need to spend a few minutes “letting go” of our hectic outer activities and the impact they have on our mental state. A breathing exercise is perfect for this.
There are many different breathing exercises, this particular one also serves to help us become aware of a more subtle space within ourselves – the centre of the chest houses the Heart centre. The Heart centre is a sweet and peaceful space which we will use in subsequent meditation exercise.