Meditation is an essential element of any psychic development program, but as so many of you have discovered, it is easier said than done. Especially in today’s world, it can be a real challenge to quiet the mind long enough to make a deep connection with yourSelf. Chanting, drumming, meditation tapes, working with crystals, repeating a personal mantra, are all useful ways of helping to focus the mind and stop the inner chatter. A Meditation and Visualization exercise is also very useful for creating a focus.
For some people, the trouble is that they try too hard. They want to create the perfect space, and then set rather unrealistic expectations about what to expect.
For example, there are many times when I will take time to meditate, clear my mind, focus on my breath and manage to maintain this lovely clear space for some time – without having a single vision or inspiration….. the value, the insights and messages come later. As a result of having cleared my mind, I always find the day’s work goes more easily, and the insights arise as I need them.
When meditation becomes part of your daily routine, it becomes easier to drop into the space that enables you to contemplate… I meditate while driving, doing dishes, gardening, walking the dog… One of the ways that I have learned to quiet my busy Monkey mind for meditation is to get active with some physical work that will entrain the body and leave my mind free to focus.
Although a sacred space is useful to putting you in the right space for meditation, there is no perfect place to meditate, nor any specific methood that is better or more effective than any other… It is a matter of finding what works for you, as Phil identifies in his response to a recent inquiry.
I merely have a question.. I wish to see my animal guide, however, when I attempt to meditate (I’m just starting, I’ve read a lot, but I have a frenzied mind but I’m able to silence it) I can’t visualize anything. I hear sounds, usually mixed sounds I can’t put together. Why can’t I understand the sounds I hear, and yes, I concentrate lightly, and put my thoughts aside.., I can’t see images, and I can’t visualize the landscape or area where I’m hearing the sounds from.., What’s up with it? Robert
What you’ve got going on is what the Buddhists would call “the monkey mind.” Don’t worry – I had that for years, listening to endless inner chattering. I couldn’t for the life of me just sit down, meditate like I was told to, go within, breathe through the nose and exhale through the mouth, and all that other stuff. It didn’t work for me, so I just gave up.
I learned to blame my over-active mind on my natal Mercury retrograde, and a touch of childhood ADD, but for whatever reason, I found I could access my guides when I least expected them. For instance, I’ll have some of my greater epiphanies when I’m crawling along a country road through a violent thunderstorm. I’ll revisit it after I’ve gotten safely home, and file it away in my inner Roladex.
I also have the luxury of living out in the woods – close to nature – and so the nature spirits are all around me. Nature is obviously the best place to get in touch with animal guides, so if you can, I’d suggest getting out there often, if you aren’t currently. Whenever I make eye contact with any wild thing, I’ll always talk to it in a friendly and non-threatening way, and make no sudden motions. I’ll sense they’re trying to tell me something, and I might have to go back to Ted Andrews book “Animal-Speak” which can help decipher the animal’s energetics.
I’ll also check-out their behavior, as this can be a helpful clue. For instance, one day I was walking in the woods here, and I came upon a three-foot snake – only about an inch in diameter – with a three-inch toad in it’s mouth. There was no way this snake was ever going to swallow the poor thing, but the toad was already a goner so I didn’t try to rescue it. I pondered on it for a while until I recognized the metaphor of “biting off more than you can chew,” and I immediately transferred that image to a woman I had just started seeing romantically. I got that message loud and clear! Yup, she proved she was too much for me to handle, and so I broke things off as delicately as I could.
Figure out your own best way to meditate and things should work out okay. One size does not fit all when it comes to meditation, so we’ve all got to investigate what’s most comfortable for ourselves. Peace, Phil the astrologer