Most yoga students begin their journey toward health by taking "Yoga Classes," which usually means classes doing the physical practice of Yoga, called asana (yoga poses). Did you know that Yoga, which means "union" in Sanskrit, is actually a much vaster set of tools for health and healing? The physical exercise is just one aspect of this amazing science and art. Meditation is another aspect of yoga with an additional set of tools that can help create an essential practice for living a healthy and whole life.
So, just what is meditation, and how do you know you are finding a quality meditation program?
- Meditation is not about following a guru who gives you all of the answers. Instead, it should be about learning to follow your own heart, your own inner wisdom and truth.
- Meditation is not a religion. Instead it should allow you to more fully embody your own chosen faith, and discover for yourself the integral truths revealed by a true spiritual teacher.
- Meditation is not about drifting off into space. Instead it should offer specific tools to focus your mind, and help direct you on your own private journey toward truth.
- Meditation is not about taking hours out of each day to meditate. Instead meditation should teach practical and quick techniques that can be done in just minutes at any time of the day. Meditation should be about strengthening your connection to your inner wisdom all throughout the day, not just for the time that you are seated. There are a few forms of meditation that teach simple techniques which are powerful enough to bring the light of your soul into your everyday life. Use them to center your mind, open your heart, receive inner guidance and gain more energy for joyful living.
Most forms of meditation teach the mind to focus and become calm. This is a good start, but then where does the calm, focused mind go? In a few forms of meditation, for example, Purna Yoga Meditation, the mind is taught to focus upon what, in yoga, is called the Heart Chakra. The Heart Chakra is the seat of the soul in the physical body and it houses the wisdom of the soul. When the mind begins to attune itself to the wisdom of the heart chakra, it is gently filled with the wisdom of the soul, and this wisdom begins to manifest in everyday life.
Since meditation requires a willingness to grow and change, be sure that your teacher is equipped to guide you in the best way possible. Here are some things to look for in a meditation teacher:
- A good meditation teacher teaches from their soul instead of their mind.
- A good meditation teacher has access to eternal wisdom through the Heart Chakra and they live what they teach.
- A good meditation teacher understands the importance of guiding the student to connect with their own Light and Love and not to the teacher.
- A good meditation teacher knows simple healing techniques for themselves and their students.
- A good meditation teacher is not vulnerable to the ego's tricks that can deceive teachers into thinking they are connecting with their soul, and they know how to test the ego when it pretends to be Truth.
- A good meditation teacher has developed trustable intuition that allows their soul to lead their life.
- A good meditation teacher is a beacon of light in their classes and in the world, shining their Divine Essence through each cell, showing their students what is inside themselves.
All faiths ask us to live from love; find a truthful meditation teacher who can teach you how to go to the heart where love awaits you.
© 2008 Aadil Palkhivala