The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


I enjoy speaking of the pure forms of meditation, stripped of cultural artifice. Here are some basic ideas, moving from VERY simple to more involved. If you can integrate one level, move on to the next.

1) Stop five times a day, every three hours, and breathe deep and slow for one minute. This is a MINIMUM. Anyone can afford this much time. If you tell yourself you don't, you are lying.

2) Spend 10-20 minutes a day "listening" to your heartbeat. Take your pulse if necessary. Sit quietly, head erect as if held by a string from above. Relax, calm, release your tensions. Relax your face.

3) Slow the breathing. When your mind wanders during your 10-20 minute sessions, "bounce" it back and forth between heartbeat and breathing. If you can "thread" your breath through a "doughnut" of your heartbeat, (those images will make sense once you've mastered the step), you have reached a deeper level of calm.

4) If you've mastered that level, visualize yourself sitting before a mirror. See yourself in the mirror, sitting relaxed, breathing, and feeling/listening to your heartbeat.

5) If you can hold that image, imagine yourself "pregnant" with your own "inner child" self.

6) If you can hold this, listen carefully to see if that inner self has anything to say to you.

Trust me--what I've presented here represents years of work for most people. But the qualities of relaxation, self-love, self-acceptance, visualization, and focus you will develop are profound.

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