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                                     BASIC MEDITATION TECHNIQUES
                                              Bill Witt
             The  course is devided into  three sections. Section  one deals with
           what meditation is and how it  plays a part in the lives of  those who
           use it.   Section two will go into the techniques and tools of medita-
           tion.  Section three  gives  suggestions on  how  to use  what  you've
           learned, in everyday life. A list of books for further  reading on the
           subject, will be given at the end of section three.
           Webster  defines meditation as "The  act of meditating;  close or con-
           tinued thought; the revolving of a subject in the mind."
                 To meditate is to focusmentally on one thought, idea, orconcept.
           It may also mean, to revolve an idea in your mind so as to  change the
           way in which you think  of that idea. Meditation is therefore,  a tool
           with which you may manipulate thought in an organized manner.
                 Many people view meditationas a very difficult thing tolearn. In
           reality  though, we  do  it often  without even  knowing it.  When you
           daydream or  find your mind  fixed on one  thought, that is a  form of
           meditation. Have  you ever watched a  bird in flight, or  stared up at
           the clouds in the sky, or maybe even found yourself  watching a stream
           of water flow by? If you have and at that moment the rest of the world
           around you has seemed removed, then you were in a state of meditation.
           The real key to this practice, is to be  able to exercise control over
           your thoughts and awareness of the world around you.
                 There are manygroups of people for whom meditationis an everyday
           ritual.  Others use it at  special times as a means of relaxation  and
           "mental  house cleaning." It allows the individual a freedom unlike no
           other freedom. The  freedom to look inside oneself  and learn just who
           you  are. Some use it  as a way  of being closer to  nature or God. No
           matter  how you wish to  use it, you  will find it a  healthy and very
           rewarding experience.
                 Most all  religions practice meditation  in one way  or another.
           Eastern philosophies such as  Yoga, and Buddism are not  the only ones
           to view meditation as a  way of looking for  the Truth found in  one's
           own consciousness.  Even  in Christianity meditation finds a  place of
           value. The Bible itself  mentions the value of meditation.  In writing
           to  the Phillippians,  the  Apostle Paul  tells  them this.  "Finally,
           brethren, whatsoever  things are  true, whatsoever things  are honest,
           whatsoever  things are  just, whatsoever  things are  pure, whatsoever
           things  are lovely, whatsoever things are of  good report; if there be
           any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things."
           (Phil. 4.8)
                 So you ask,what can it do for me. Well, beyond just being a good
           way to really relax, which we can all use in this hectic world, it can
           be  a doorway to  the Truth inside  yourself. It  is a way  of gaining
           wisdom. Knowledge has  always been fairly easy  to come by. Wisdom  on
           the other hand, is a bit harder to grasp onto.
                 In  "The Task" by William  Cowper, the following  line is found.
           "Knowledge dwells in heads replete with thoughts of other men: Wisdom,
           in minds attentive to their own."
                 For me, meditaion becomesa way of "grounding" myself,of reaching
           a  place of peace and stability,  where I can find how  I fit into the
                 Inmany philosophies, meditaion isviewed as anecessary skill. All
           those who  are students of these  philosophies must learn the  ways of
           meditaion early in  their training. Although  the techniques may  vary
           from one  group to another,  the most basic concepts  remain the same.
           The ability to be able  to focus on one thought and  selectively block
           out all  others is the foundation upon which many more advanced skills
           will be built. These skills may range from telepathy to the ability to
           move objects with only the mind.
                 It is well known that Yogi adepts can lower their  breathing and
           heart rates to near death levels. This is something you should not try
           as it takes  years of practice  to learn and  can be quite  dangerous.
           Still, these yogis are proof  of the type of power the  mind can exer-
           cise over the body through meditation.
              In some cultures, the use of drugs to achieve a meditative state is
           encouraged.  The american indians for example, used drugs derived from
           various  plants to put themselves  into an altered  state of concious-
           ness. This  was usually done as  a religious practice and  as an event
           marking the change from one  state of life to another. A  good example
           would be the ceremony marking the coming into manhood of  a young boy.
           Today there are  still many, who advocate the use  of drugs to achieve
           these altered states.  It is my opinion that such measures are neither
           necessary nor good.  You can  reach an altered  state of  conciousness
           without the use of drug induced "highs". It takes practice, but
           it can be done.
                   In New Age philosophy, theart of meditaion is highlyvalued. We
           also find  another  well developed  skill  which is  called  "creative
           visualization". This is  the idea of visualising what you  want to the
           point of  it  becoming reality.  A good  example would  be a  salesman
           visualizing  himself  as successful  and  prosperous.  The concept  is
           simple, if  you can visualize  a personal reality,  you can change  or
           bring that reality into being. "Positive Thinking" is a very
           similar  idea. The  technique  of creative  visualization goes  beyond
           positive  thinking  however. It  deals with  the  premise that  we all
           create our  own reality and  therefore have the  power to  change many
           aspects of that  reality. The idea of "personal  reality" is a lengthy
           one and we do not have enough room to cover it in this course.
                 So far we have lookedbriefly at what meditation is and how it is
           used. By no means have we touched on all the aspects of this practice.
           There  are many  books on  the  subject which  cover it  in much  more
           detail. My purpose  is to give you  an overview of the  many facets of
           meditation in the hope that you will wish to learn more.
                                     BASIC MEDITATION TECHNIQUES
                 This  is the second part of a  three part online course in Basic
           Meditation Techniques
                 Thecourse is devided into three sections. Section one deals with
           what meditation is  and how it plays a part in  the lives of those who
           use it.  Section two  will go into the techniques and tools of medita-
           tion.  Section three  gives  suggestions on  how  to use  what  you've
           learned, in everyday life. A list  of books for further reading on the
           subject, will be given at the end of section three.
                 In thissecond section ofthe "Basic MeditationTechniques" course,
           we  will discuss various relaxation  procedures and how  they will aid
           you  in entering a trance or meditative  state. You will also be given
           some ideas about  types of music and other "tools"  which can help you
           achieve these relaxed states of mind. Let's begin.
                 First, let's set thestage for our meditation practice.You should
           pick a  place which is  as private  and safe as  possible. An  altered
           state of mind, as in meditation, lessens your awareness of the outside
           world. For this reason, it is not advisable to practice these  techni-
           ques  in  a public  place where  there is  a  chance of  being mugged,
           robbed, or molested. If you are at home, with other  family members or
           friends present,  ask that  you not  be disturbed  and that  all other
           noise in  the house be kept to a minimum.  When you have found a place
           suitable for meditation, you may begin.
                 "The seekers of  new mind states-the mind  control devotees, the
           encounter  group  enthusiasts,  the  drug takers,  the  psychics,  the
           meditators - all are on a journey into the interior universe trying to
           burst  the limits of the socially conditioned mind. Weither acceptable
           or unacceptable, moral or immoral, wise or foolish, the mind of man is
           stirring toward a new evolution."
                      Dr. Barbara Brown (1)
                 As Isaid in section one,trance or meditaive states,alter the way
           your mind deals with the realities it accepts as normal.  Things which
           are  experienced in a trance  state are often  not easily expressed in
           everyday language.  You will at  some level,  experience a  heightened
           state of awareness.   Colors,  smells, and sounds  may seem  amplified
           from what they normally are.
                 People who can acheivevery deep statesof trance often leavetheir
           bodies in astral projection, or have psychic experiences.
                 I highly  recommend, that if  you wish  to enter deep  states of
           meditation, you do so under  the guidance and teaching of someone  who
           is well trained  in the practice of such techniques.  The key thing to
           remember is that it's  not what level your working on  as much as what
           you  are learning. There is alot to  be gained in wisdom and knowledge
           at all levels of trance.
              Now let's learn some simple and usefull relaxation exercises.
                 You want to besure that the timeyou pick to practice yourmedita-
           tion is a time when you  are least likely to be disturbed.  You should
           not be  overly tired or  have just  finished eating as  both of  those
           conditions  may cause  you to  fall asleep.  Even though  you wish  to
           acheive  an  altered state  of consciousness,  you  do want  to remain
           conscious to some degree. If you fall asleep when you  are meditating,
           no  harm is  done  and you  will  awaken quite  refreshed  and rested.
           Unfortunately though, you may not be able to recall all the things you
           experienced while in trance.
                 If you are  lying down, be sure your back  and neck are properly
           supported so as not  to fatigue the body. If you  are sitting, be sure
           that both feet are flat on the floor and that you are sitting as erect
           as possible without being  too stiff or strained. You should have your
           arms resting comfortably in your lap with palms up.
                 In eithercase, it is important thatyour body not become strained
           or fatigued for  at least   thirty minutes. This  is a good length  of
           time  to begin  with as  it should  put neither  a physical  or mental
           strain on your being.
                 Next, visualize a yourself in a cocoon of whitelight. You should
           surround  yourself completely. See the  light as bright  and warm. You
           may play with this sphere  of light making it bigger or  smaller until
           it "feels"  right for you.   Say to yourself,  "I am protected  by the
           pure white light of all that is good and truthfull. I am surrounded by
           the pure light which keeps out all unwanted and evil influences."
                 Thisis a good ideato do for several reasons.There are those, and
           I am  one of them,  who believe that each  of generates an  aura which
           protects us from  outside influences when we are in  trance. This aura
           may  be strengthened by visualizing  the light as  growing brighter at
           our command. Even if you do not accept this idea, the practice lends a
           feeling of  safety and security to  you.  Nothing which  is outside of
           you may enter or touch you without your permission.
                 Learning tocontrol and pay attentionto your breathing isthe next
           step.  You should start by taking  a deep breath in through your nose,
           hold  it for  the mental count  of 4  and then  let it all  out slowly
           through  your mouth.  Repeat this until  you begin to feel at rest and
           relaxed. Allow your breathing  to settle into a steady,  rythmic rate.
           Just this simple technique can relax and refresh you at any time. When
           you  are only doing the breathing exercise,  it is not necessary to go
           through  the  white light  sphere  visualization.  Some people  use  a
           muffled metronome or recording of some other rythmic sound, such as
           ocean waves, to  aid them in  setting the pace  of their breathing.  A
           good source of  recorded sounds which can help you  in meditation is a
           series of records  and tapes which have been produced  under the title
                 Now, as you are breathing,see yourself lying in the warmlight of
           the sun.  The  light is warm and pleasant to be  in. Starting with the
           tips of  your toes, feel  the light warming  all of your  body, slowly
           moving up  into your legs,  your trunk,  and then into  your arms  and
           fingers. As you feel this warming become more and  more relaxed, going
           deeper and deeper into a calm and quiet place.  
                 Whenyou fell totally relaxed andat peace, bring a single thought
           into your mind. It  should be of a  pleasant experience or of an  idea
           such as love, joy, peace, or compassion. Focus on this one thought and
           if  some other  thought should  try to  intrude, picture  it  as being
           written on  a clear  board between  you and  your focal  thought. Then
           picture it being erased from that board as it might be from a piece of
           paper.  Deal with any thought, other than your focal thought, quickly.
           Try  to maintain concentration on your focal thought for at least five
           minutes. Picture it as being real and experience it as if it were.
           When you are  able to do this  and can exclude  all other thoughts  as
           they attempt to enter your mind, you will have learned the single most
           important technique of meditation.
                 It isnow time to begincoming back tonormal consciousness. slowly
           let the thought fade from your mind and again become aware of the warm
           light of the sun. As  you fell the light  bathing you in its'  warmth,
           start  to reconnect  your mind  with the  physical sensations  of your
           body. Become aware of your breathing  and the room around you. Do this
           slowly and calmly. When you are fully aware of your surroundings, open
           your eyes slowly. Enjoy the sense of calm and peace.
                 If  you succeeded in doing  this exercise, you  should feel more
           relaxed and calm than normal. It is important to remember that you are
           comparing it to normal for you, not to what you  think others would or
           should feel.
              If you do not feel you succeeded try again in a day or two. Between
           meditaion  sessions, practice  your deep  breathing exercises.  If you
           keep  trying, you will soon reach a  calm and meditative state. Do not
           attempt to meditate when you are ill, tired, or hungry. Those feelings
           only serve to  make your efforts more difficult. A very important part
           to  remember is  that you  can not  force yourself  into a  meditative
           state. You must flow into it and surrender to it calmly.
              Some things which are found to be helpfull in meditation follow.
                 Tryconcentrating on theflame of a candlewhen focusing. You could
           also  use a  crystal ball. The  later is  rather exspensive  but small
           crystal  window ornaments  or pyramids  also work  well and  cost much
                 Music is also anaid to some. The music shouldbe quiet and rhyth-
           mic. It should bring on feelings  of peace and comfort. Such music may
           range from New Age recordings to classical.
                 Anotherusefull device is to focus ona symbol which holds special
           meaning for  you. It may  be an well  known symbol  or one you  design
           yourself. As long as it holds a special meaning or expresses a special
           concept, it is a usefull focusing tool.
                 This brings section twoof this course toa close. In the nextpart
           I  will give you  some pratical  ways in  which to  use what  you have
                 The mostobvious use ofthe techniques you havelearned, is relaxa-
           tion.  During the course of the day, many of us have moments  when the
           pressure becomes almost  to much.  When this happens,  we often  can't
           deal with other people  or projects the way  we should. The  breathing
           exercises you learned in section two can help at these times.
                 It doesn't  require alot of time or  absolute quiet as does your
           meditation  practice. All that is  required is about  five minutes and
           relative privacy. At these times,  begin doing your rhythmic breathing
           and visualize  a place which is  calm and refreshing. This  simple and
           quick  exercise,  can work  wonders to  help you  regain control  in a
           hectic situation.
                 Another way in which meditation is used is in the development of
           psychic powers. There are several books  on the subject, listed at the
           end of this section. Most of those who teach about the use and develo-
           pment  of these abilities, agree  that meditation is  necessary to any
           such study. Again the reason for this is that meditation allows you to
           reach an altered  state of  conciousness. In this  altered state  your
           mind  is more  open to  such phenomenon  as telepathy.  If you  should
           decide to persue  studies in this direction,  please seek the help  of
           someone trained in these areas.
                 One final use I will suggest is visualization. Meditation can be
           used as  a tool for  problem solving. While  in a meditative  state of
           mind, you have the ability to take any situation and manipulate it. By
           that I mean you can mentally play the out the  situation using several
           different  solutions. Then, you can  pick the one  which seems to best
           solve the  problem. While the use of meditation can help you deal with
           problem solving more effectively, it is  not infallible. All it can do
           is allow you to think more  clearly and concisely about the problem at
                 Well  that concludes this study  on meditation. I  hope you have
           gained something usefull from this course. It has been by  no means, a
           full  explanation of the  subject. There  is much  more to  learn than
           could be covered in this short series and It is my  hope that you will
           want to continue your studies into this fascinating and usefull skill.
                 More studiesof this type willbe developed in thenear future. The
           New Atlantis BBS  will continue to  post these  studies as an  ongoing
           service to  it's users. Please  feel free to leave  suggestions on the
           BBS about subjects you would like to see covered.
           list of books for further reading will be included.
           (1) Dr. Barbara Brown
               "New Mind, New Body"
                New York, Bantam Books, 1975
                Page 17
           Miriam Simos (Starhawk)
           The Spiral Dance
           New York
           Harper & Row; 1979
           W.E. Butler
           How To Read The Aura, Practice
           Psycometry, Telepathy and
           New York
           Destiny Books; 1978
           Melita Denning & Osborne Phillips
           The Development of Psychic Powers
           St. Paul, MN
           Llewellyn Publications; 1985
                                          NEW ATLANTIS BBS
                                    Member of the ParaNet system 
                                             End Of File
           Changes in format by the magician.  02/26/89 Crystal Cave 719-391-1092

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