Starting on page 174 of Tom’s book, MBT… he relates three exercises for learning to meditate. Each method focuses upon one of our major methods of learning: Auditory, Visually and by Touch. He uses those as a means of quieting and focusing the mind away from the physical.
You can read the book and the associated pages here for free: My-Big-Toe
It’s a link that is fully endorsed by Tom himself… so feel free to read the whole thing should you choose to. Smiley
The auditory exercise is about repeating a mantra.
The visual exercise is about allowing objects to appear before you in the blackness (sound familiar?) or creating a simple “scenario” and playing it out allowing yourself to perceive all the sensory input from it (also sounds familiar, eh?).
The touch exercise is about creating the sense of you touching something, like running your hands over a fur coat.
So yeah… you’re to keep doing the chosen exercise and bringing your attention back to it whenever you notice that it’s wandering. However he mentions that when the image/sound/scenario begins to slip away (aka your mind begins to wander), but no extraneous thoughts appear, then just let the image/sound/scenario go and drift in the still oneness of your consciousness. <– That’s the point consciousness state.
Once you’re in that state where you’re experiencing that “drifting oneness of consciousness” you have *ALREADY* phased. It’s just a matter at that point to place your Intent towards what you want to do, and allow it to happen.
And this part is of UTMOST IMPORTANCE:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xE9S4ll1j4sBe careful not to try too hard, and do not struggle with high resolution, image quality, or anything else. Images may be felt as well as seen. Struggling to make your meditation be how you think it should be is always counterproductive. No expectations. No struggle. No demands. The point is not to force your will on the process, but to let the process unfold naturally as it captivates your attention.
I found a response that Tom had made to someone who was having problems with meditating. I think it’s a complete gem. Please do read.
It’s a great suggestion really. Don’t jump headlong into meditation… learn to stop those mental interruptions, and before you know it you’ll be meditating!You need to learn to meditate consistently first before trying more complex things, no wonder you are frustrated. Some how we have to calm that mind down or figure out a way to keep it occupied with non-operational non analytical fluff.
sound: Breathe normally but slowly, you can’t meditate holding your breath. Listen for the mantra while you inhale (breath in)(like listening for the thunder), Then hear the sound of the mantra in your mind while you exhale (breathe out), immediately listen for it again during the next incoming breath, then hear it again while exhaling, etc. As soon as any thoughts intrude, Gently (casually) put them side and begin listening and hearing again with the next breath — always breathing smoothly and slowly. keep this up. for just 5 minutes — set a timer or an alarm. when that gets easy lengthen it to 10 minutes, when that gets easy lengthen it to 20 minutes and then to a half hour. Do this at least several times a day (more when the times are short). EVEN IF THE IF THE LISTENING AND HEARING ONLY LAST A MICROSECOND BEFORE BEING INTERRUPTED, KEEP IT UP, JUST GENTLY AND CALMLY BUT FIRMLY PUT THE THOUGHTS ASIDE AS SOON AS YOU NOTICE AN INTERRUPTION AND THEN GO BACK TO LISTNING AND HEARING. Just do it with no expectations – we are not trying to meditate yet, first we must minimize those interruptions — that’s all, forget meditation for now — we are only trying to minimize the interruptions.
If you keep at it, the time between interruptions will grow – even if it grows from one microsecond to two microseconds, stick with it and it will continue to grow. After three months of multiple times a day, you should notice some progress. At that time, if the interruptions have slowed enough, report in and we will go to step 2
Sight: Same as above except instead of listening and hearing imagine a soccer ball levitating in front of you in one spot. As you breathe in let the ball spin slowly forward (top moving toward you, point closest to you moving down, and point on the bottom surface of the ball moving away from you), As your breath stops, let the ball stop, then as you breathe out let the ball spin slowly backward. Just intently watch the ball. Breathe slowly and rhythmically. All the rest is the same.
You do not need to wait 3 months to let us know what is happening, but do wait three months before analyzing anything or making any judgments. Just do and observe.