Wednesday, April 4, 2012

How to Meditate by Colin Boone

The following article was contributed to our blog @ moXieantiques by Colin Boone.
Colin is a retired glassblower and artist who currently resides in UK. In his earlier life, he had lived in Tibet for more than a decade learning the art of Thangka painting in the Tibetan tradition... Colin will share with us the first of more articles below... We hope you enjoy the fruits of his kindness and generosity....



How to Meditate by Colin Boone



… It is often asked, How to Meditate? Tibetan Buddhists have thousands of meditation techniques, each with different styles to suit personality types and objectives, but from a general Buddhist perspective, the reason is to travel into the vastness called Nirvana.

There is no mystery to meditation and I can only explain my own practice which I am sure will guide you with helpful direction.

I find at least three things essential to myself personally which you may also wish to consider.

*Tingsha cymbals. 

An external object of observation: Such as a Buddha, or a White Tara statuette, figurine, or a *wall plaque for example, or a Thangka.    

1.          Firstly you must create calmness and make yourself comfortable by sitting upon the floor if you can, or even on a chair.

2.          Before your meditation begins Tingsha (cymbals) are used to bring forth your awareness.

Striking these small cymbals together will produce a clear lasting tone. These perfectly matched tones, benefit meditation by ensuring clearness & calm. A further strike is also used when your meditation is ample and complete, which returns your mind back to certainty.

3.          Having made yourself comfortably sat, arranging your legs in the most comfortable position, straighten your back so that your backbone is straight & narrow.

4.          You now need to rest your hands in the meditative pose, by placing your left hand at the bottom and your right at the top, palms facing upwards. Your thumbs should be touching so as to form a triangle and your hands rested just below your navel at say 2 inches below it. You are now in the gesture of meditation.

5.          Now bend your neck down slightly and let the top of your tongue rest upon the roof of your mouth near the top of your teeth.

If this is your first attempt, then for this exercise you may wish to take things no further and to practice the above posture so that it becomes second nature. I have witnessed many who give up with learning how to mediate, simply due to an expectation of some miraculous experience occurring as if meditation is a magic…

Your goal is only to sustain the stability of your mental inner observation, of the Buddha that you yourself have created in your mind’s eye and with clarity and steadiness. Being able to control your thoughts and observing the mental image, which is called “introspection” by Tibetan Buddhists.

In some Tibetan practices the eyes are focussed looking at the tip of one’s nose, however I let my eyes gaze gently downwards towards the floor in front of me and without straining them…

6.          Allow your eyelids to relax, do not open them wide and do not worry if they open and close naturally, for once that your mental evenness & steadiness has been achieved your gaze shall fix naturally. Learn to become aware of how your breathing has slowed down and how quiet your mind is.

There are “no set rules of time” and only you can sense once your own mental equilibrium is steady.

7.          Then and now is the time that you move your attention away from the mind and meditate (think about, consider and contemplate) upon your external object of observation… Such as those previously described 

And that shall be my next lesson, so that you have opportunity here to absorb and to understand and to practice the fundamental basics as provided here for your perusal, as best that I am able to describe and express.


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*If you are unable to find good Tingsha (or Buddha wall plaques for your external object of observation) I am able to locate these items such as those pictured and mail them from England at cost price. This is not an advertisement to sell, however if I can be of any assistance then please do contact me via messaging on this site.

Blessings & Enlightenment,
to all.  

Om mani padme hum




If any of this interests you, pls stay tuned for more contributions from Colin on the topic of meditation on our blog @ http://www.moxieantiques-us.blogspot.com/

Many thanks to Colin Boone for kindly contributing art work and this article on meditation to our blog @ moxieantiques...
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