I Can’t Meditate!
This is a response I get from many people who have either tried meditation or simply feel they won’t be able to do it.
Here is what I tell them…
Firstly I ask the question ‘What do you think meditation is?’
A common response is something like “Reaching a higher state of consciousness” or “Having no thoughts’ or ‘being relaxed and free from anxiety of worry”
In fact all of these answers are somewhat true, but more accurately meditation is a state of having complete full awareness, of having an ‘awakened mind.’
Electronically you can measure the brainwaves emitted by a meditator using an EEG device and you will see a marked increase in both alpha and theta brainwaves creating a brainwave harmonizing effect where instead of just producing one predominant brainwaves such as beta, which most people in normal day to day lives do, or delta when people are asleep, all conscious brainwaves of alpha, theta and beta are being produced at a more balanced level with a reduction in the higher beta brainwaves associated with sympathetic nervous system, the flight of fight response.
The brainwaves emitted during sleep and rest are very different to those emitted during meditation, showing that meditation is indeed a different state of consciousness and could be considered a ‘higher state of consciousness’. Dr Keith Wallace from Harvard School, famous for studying meditators, described meditation as the ‘4th maor state of consciousness’ and as being an ‘alert, hypometabolic state’.
Looking at meditation from purely the benefits it can give to your health from a physical and mental point of view, it is an altered state of consciousness that is followed by a deeper state of rest than what occurs in sleep, and that allows better communication between the right and left sides of your brain, allowing awareness for unmanifested creativity that can be turned into reality.
Comparing your brain to a computer you could describe meditation as method to quickly defrag your harddisk and reorganize your thought files. On a deeper level you can even go as far as reprograming your operating system with a new set of instructions.
Krishnamurti the famous indian philosopher spoke that meditation in the beginning is the art of control of attention. Good meditation begins with the cessation of thought and that attention is clarity, free from intellectualized thought. Awareness of this is to be attentive.
Patanjali the great scholar of the yoga sutras, stated over 2000 years ago that the basis of all types of meditation is learning to control your attention and that meditation can be divided into two kinds, concentrative meditation and mindfulness depending on where your attention is focused.
What Is Concentrative Meditation?
This type of meditation is what most of the yogic, sufi and even christian techniques are based. This is where you give full attention to one unchanging, repeating perception or idea. The use of mantras, music and even rythmical dance and movements may be used to get into deep concentrative meditative trance states.
What is Mindfulness Meditation?
During mindfulness meditation you give complete full attention to the changing content of your own awareness without becoming attached to it, or trying to change any part of it. The aim is to become full aware of everything that you are aware of.
To learn to quieten the mind, to be free of intellectualized thoughts, to stop the flow of idle chatter and the internal record player, to be free of worry and anxieties of the day and to allow your mind to fully breathe are the aims of meditation.
Many people actually fear to be in this state, in the same way they may fear doing something unknown to them and having an altered state of consciousness. Those people more open minded and less prone to fear of things like death or taking risks tend to find it easier to meditate, even though in meditation there are no risks only bringing you more life and joy.
There are so many different forms and types of meditation that it can become confusing and overwhelming with choice. Some forms state you should be in silence, others use music, guided imagery and chants, some say you should not move, others use rhythmical movements and dance. Some techniques involve concentrating on mandalas and even candles, others say you should be completely free from all senses.
My conclusion is that there is no right or wrong way, there is just the ‘way’. This way is personal and for you to choose which is right for you. So it is probably sensible to try several out till you find one that really suits you.
I personally prefer the use of brainwave entrainment combined with meditation music (Trypnaural) and combining with Brainwave Vibration and deep diaphramic breathing.
When you bring your attention to your breath, it is very difficult to think of anything else apart from your breathing. When you breathe deeply you also begin to flood your body wth vital oxygen which is an added benefit.
Here is a simple breathing exercise you can begin to do to start becoming more aware by focusing your attention on your breath. Repeating this exercise daily will allow you to experience what it is like to meditate.
Easy Meditation Exercise
“You breathe in and out every day but you are never mindful of it. You never for a second concentrate your mind on it. Now you are going to do just this. Breathe in and out as usual, without any effort or strain. Now bring your mind to concentrate on breathing in and out. Let your mind observe the process of breathing in and out. When you breathe you sometimes take deep breaths and sometimes not. This does not matter at all. Breathe how you normally do. The only thing you should observe is that you take deep breaths and that you are aware they are deep breaths. Your mind should be fully concentrated on your breathing that you are aware of its movements and changes. Forget all other things such as your environment or surroundings. Do not raise your eyes to look at anything. Try to do this for five to ten minutes.” W. Rahula ‘What Buddha Taught’
At first you may find it hard to concentrate your mind on just breathing. You may be suprized at how easily your mind drifts from one thought to the next. But with repeat daily practice you will find you can easily concentrate on just your breath.
After a while of practicing this you will at one point for perhaps a split second or two become completely detached from the external world where you will not even hear sounds nearby. This will feel like a moment of pure joy for you, but then you may go right back into trying to intellectualize what just happened.
However the more your practice this the longer and longer you will be able to experience this state of inner peace, immersing yourself in the mindfulness of breathing. When you are being conscious of yourself you can never fully concentrate on anything. This exercise of mindfulness allows you to develop levels of concentration up to the level of the highest mystics.
When I compose music a similar effect occurs when I am really focused and in bliss with my new creation, where I become completely detached from the external world. I won’t even hear the person yelling at me telling me I have a phone call or an unfinished chore that I promised to do!
Creating anything I believe is a profound method of meditation. In fact I believe one of the reason mystics practised meditation was so that they could be better at concentrating on one task. Only through deep focused concentration on one task at a time can you create works of genius that stand the test of time.
For me learning meditation has been a profound experience allowing me to heal from a chronic illness that the doctors said would never be treatable without drugs or surgery, and has also given me a heightened state of creativity that I never had before. I also have gained a mysterious power of being able to attract many of the things I want in my life. Many of my close friends and business colleagues will back this claim up as the events that occur in my life these days are beyond comprehension, in a good way of course!
This also proves to me that learning to meditate is the only real way to make this deeply misunderstood and mistaught law of attraction really work, something many other so called ‘law of attraction’ gurus simply don’t understand yet, because they don’t meditate.
I was recommended a book from my mentor, David Bentley, one of the pioneers of biofeedback and brainwave training in the UK called ‘The Awakened Mind’ A lot of my new research and thoughts are now based on the great work of its author Maxwell Cade, a true genius of meditation and brainwave entrainment in his own right. I highly recommend reading this book and using biofeedback devices as a means to help you learn how to get into meditative states in a faster time.
I am about to start experimenting with them myself and will share my results very soon, giving you more evidence on how Trypnaural can help you reach these special trance states of heightened awareness fast!
For now here are some links to my various blog posts sharing how to use Trypnaural with my favorite meditation techniques:
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Peace and blessings