Guided Meditation #1
We are sitting with body and mind composed. Relax your body. Let go of what is in your mind.
We note it lightly without expecting to gain anything – the main practice is trying to let go.
Be aware of the inbreath and outbreath. When breathing in, know the in-breath. When breathing out, know the out-breath. Follow every moment of the breath. Know it clearly – when the in-breath is long, or the out-breath is long. Know it clearly, when the in-breath is short, or the out-breath is short.
We are noting the whole breath.
Notice every period of each cycle.
Be aware of the breath from the beginning of breathing in, during breathing in, and end of breathing in.
Be aware of the breath from the beginning of breathing out, during breathing out, and end of breathing out.
Observe any changes.There is a pause after the end of the in-breath – after that the out-breath starts. There is a pause after the out-breath – after that the in-breath starts.
Adjust the breath so that the in-breath and out-breath are smooth, relaxed, soft, and refined. After breathing in fully, gently breathe out slowly. The breath will become more soft and subtle.
When you follow the inbreath and outbreath continuously, concentration will develop. The breath will be lighter, quieter, and sometimes it appears to stop. Continue to watch at the same spot without reacting – you will notice the change in the breath.
Continue to observe the breath with effort, mindfulness, and clear comprehension. But at the same time, also let go of the pleasure or dissatisfaction that arises. Watch the breath without controlling it. Notice that during breathing in and breathing out either pleasant or unpleasant feelings may occur. Happiness or unsatisfactoriness also may arise. When breathing in the tension in the chest will increase, when breathing out it will relax. You will see it as a vibration.
Expand the awareness of the sensation to cover the whole body – starting from the upper, going to the middle, and continuing to the lower part. The sensation can be felt on the skin, in the muscle, or inside the body. It can be hot/ cold, soft/ hard, tense/relaxed, pleasant/ unplesant.
To be aware of the upper body part, focus on the head, face, eyes, mouth, neck, etc. All these parts have sensations of tension, vibration, aching, hot, cold, etc.
The middle body part is from the neck to the abdomen. Observe the movement during breathing-in and breathing-out. Also, note the beating of the heart around the chest area. There may be heat and vibration that can be felt inside the abdomen or other sensations on the arms, hands, trunk etc.
The lower part is from buttocks down to the hips, legs and feet. There may be a sensation of hard/ soft , heat/ cold where the buttock touches the seat, or the legs touch each other. You can feel the weight of the body pressing down, or feel the tension and the heaviness. There may be some uncomfortable feelings such as pain, or aching at any body part that you will be able to notice.
Expand the awareness from the lower part of the body to the middle and upper part. Spread your clear awareness to cover the whole body. Observe whatever sensation that shows up on the body, and at the same time notice the feeling that appears in the mind. Notice the ongoing mental processes. It can be feeling, perception, volitional formation and consciousness that creates a variety of emotions. There are many of them ranging from feeling happy, unhappy, irritated, peaceful, a calm/busy mind, depressed mind, etc. Notice and then release them.
Learn to live without making comments or having control over whatever is going on. If you hear any noise, just know it. You do not have to reach out to the sound. You still can hear, even when you focus on the body sensation. You will feel the vibration inside the body, and also see the mind. Don’ t send the mind outward. Let the mind be settled, and keep the focus on the mind. Allow the noise to reach the ear. The mind is the knower, the watcher, and the receiver. There will always be a knower and the one being known. Feeling, thought and proliferation will follow the knowing. Watch the thinking and let go of it.
Note what is going on inside the brain as well. It may be sleepy or exhausted, which will affect the mind and make it dull and sleepy. Carefully notice these feelings. Learn to know what an unaware mind is like. Contemplate all physical and mental conditions – these are the real life nature.The rupa( form) and nama( mind) are elements that come together and then separate according to the cause and the condition. What you need to do is to note them. Train the mind to let go – not wanting anything, not commenting on anything. After noting, put them down and let go.
(Continue the practice until the end of the period.)