I first heard this concept mentioned by my teacher Yogi Amrit Desai. It simplified my understanding of the steps leading to the experience of yoga, union or meditation. Meditation is one of the richest experiences in life and something that is accessible to everyone. In fact we are all born in a state of meditation, because our thinking ego has not yet developed. Just spend a few moments with a contented baby and you will be drawn into bliss. Yet, we soon Ioose our natural link into this inner state of being. Anyone who has tried to meditate knows how challenging it can be to still the mind in order to re-experience inner peace and bliss that lays beyond mind.
For the purpose of meditation, two things link the body/mind with spirit or Being. They are; 1. felt sensations in the body 2. the breath. It’s quite simple actually. Pay attention to the sensation or feel of your breath, which is the link between the mind and and spirit. If you can do this, you are on your way into the state of meditation.
Read this short paragraph first and then try the experiment. As you inhale your next breath, feel the air passing into your nostrils, feel it passing over your sinuses, down the back of your throat and feel your lungs expand - then feel the entire returning exhalation without commenting on it mentally. Try two or three breaths in a natural, relaxed way.
During these short rounds of breathing, you likely weren’t thinking about anything else. Your attention was focussed on the feel of your breath. If you can do this for a few minutes in a relaxed manner, you begin to experience your mind letting go of habitual thinking and your body relaxing. You begin to connect to your peaceful inner presence, right here, right now. This is deeply refreshing because you are starting to access prana (energy) from a higher frequency.
What generally happens though, is that after a very short time, our habit of thinking and doing easily returns and we forget to be present and aware. Statistic say that thoughts arise every 15 seconds and that’s why so many people have told me over the years they can’t meditate. The “practice” of meditation means gently detaching from our thoughts by any number of techniques used to still the mind. Eventually, it becomes easier to maintain more of a sense of pure presence in the here and now (yoga).
It’s nearly impossible to sit down and meditate when we are overly busy or stressed, caught in the cycle of “thinking and doing” too much, or I might add “thinking and not doing enough” . We usually need some specific practices which gradually take us into the state of “feeling and being”. After time spent spent in meditation, we return to our world balanced and integrated, refreshed and energized, ready for the next steps in life. Then we can think, and do and feel and Be, in an integrated manner leading us into a natural sense of “flow” in life. Gradually, with practice, meditation becomes a way of life.