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Affirmation in Meditation

After the practice of the second part a short pause is advisable, keeping the eyes closed and feeling detached and restful. If there is tension, move the shoulders and the head a little. Breathe freely for a minute or two and then refocus the mind in the breath to begin the third part of this integral meditation, all of it being a combination of pratyahara, dharana and dhyana. This last part is a process of seeding the subconscious with some basic affirmations, relative to their opposite traits which are common to human nature.

The mind is a complex organism susceptible to influence. No one is born like a blank page on which the parents and others write what is good or bad. We are all born with innate propensities of character, even though in a rudimentary state, but each as a distinct individual. Then the first few years are highly impressionable, marking the subconscious indelibly. Afterwards, in adolescence and later years, we keep on marking the formative mind by positive endeavour and falling into bad habits, as well as being susceptible to wholesome and negative influence of individuals we come into contact with and by the kind of society we live in.

The purpose of this part of meditation is self-educative, as to what should be our nature and should not be, the reality being what we really need for our security and happiness. One may make a list of affirmations as per individual preference and necessity, and memorize them. However, they should be few and short. The following six affirmations are recommended.

While inhaling and feeling the breath, mentally repeat slowly and with a deep conviction "peace is my real nature" and while exhaling (also feeling the breath) "not conflict." Repeat the phrase three or four times, then try to absorb the meaning in silence for about a minute, breathing spontaneously. Then continue with "love is my real nature," "not resentment"; "truth is my real nature," "not untruth"; "happiness is my real nature," "not unhappiness"; "strength is my real nature," "not weakness"; "freedom is my real nature," "not bondage."

Then give a short pause, breathing freely and feeling detached. Begin again, fixing the mind in the breath, and repeat three or four times each, inhaling "peace" and exhaling "only peace"; "love," "spiritual love"; "truth," "only truth"; "happiness," "inner fullness"; "strength," "mental strength" "freedom," "spiritual freedom." Then conclude with a short pause, breathing freely.

The best time to meditate is in the early morning, but only if one wakes up fresh. Otherwise, an appropriate hour should be chosen, but not immediately after a meal. This session of meditation will take from 35 to 45 minutes. In the beginning one may shorten it to 20 to 30 minutes and, after sufficient practice, prolong up to 45 minutes or a bit longer. For most people a long meditation is not useful and may even build up tension. The quality is more important than the length of it.

An inner poise, a truthful, open, compassionate and unselfish nature, free from pretension, snobbery, prejudice and dogmatism, are the qualities one encounters in those who have progressed in meditation.

 

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