Meditation is a method of stilling the mind, either by emptying it of thought or by focusing on one thing in order to reach a state of relaxation or an altered state of consciousness. There are many purposes for and benefits of meditation. Meditation increases self-discipline strengthens the mind and relaxes the body. It also allows us to move deeper into a state of no-mind, or to journey on the astral plane.
The word meditation is from the Latin meditari meaning “to ponder” and it relates to the serious consideration or contemplation of a subject. Indeed meditation is a very useful tool for decision-making as well as exploring philosophy or spirituality.
For students of magick, meditation is very helpful for understanding the deeper mysteries and guided meditations are often used to this end during group ritual. Meditation also helps magick-users to enter deeper states of consciousness and paves the way to journey work, astral projection and dream walking. It is, therefore, a very useful skill that every magic-user should master.
Learning to meditate can be a daunting task for the beginner but in many cases, the reason for one’s trepidation is simply that the concept of meditation has been over-complicated.
Here are some quick tips for a beginner.
1. Make sure that you’ve got some time when you will not be disturbed to meditate. This does not have to be an extended period. 5-10 minutes is plenty to start. You may be surprised at how long 5-10 minutes feels when you are meditating. Set a timer on your phone or on your stove so that you’re not peeking every two minutes and to make sure you wake up if you doze off.
2. Choose a time and place that is appropriate. You want to be comfortable, not too hot or too cold and in a place where you aren’t going to be in danger of bugs crawling on you or helpful dogs licking your face. You should also choose a time when you are not too tired or you might just fall asleep. If you do fall asleep, don’t worry! Just try again tomorrow.
3. Begin by relaxing and observing your mind. Do not try to block thoughts that come to your mind at first, the idea of “no-mind” is a very advanced trick so don’t even bother with it at first. Just note what thoughts come to your mind and them set them aside. Relax, observe. Timer beeps, get up move on.
4. Repeat daily; Twice a day if possible and gradually increase the time you meditate to 20-30 minutes before seeking out and practicing more advanced techniques.
5. Keep a journal of your experiences, thoughts, and feelings about your meditation in your Book of Shadows.
Note: I find it helps to do 20 minutes or so of Yoga before meditation to facilitate the process. I also enjoy meditating while doing yoga or while walking but it is important that you know the moves or the path well before attempting this.
After you master the basics of meditating, pick a topic to meditate on say for example the Element of Earth or simply an apple. Follow the same guidelines above, starting with very short sessions. When other thoughts intrude, simply set them aside and return to thinking about your chosen topic.
- Meditation, Trance, and Vision at Into the Mound