The greatest treasure I have found in life is learning to turn within to experience the healing balm of the Innermost Self.
Universal Consciousness. The Divinity within. Inner Peace. God’s Grace. Whatever we wish to call it, I am pointing to the wellspring of existential, divine, inherent grace which resides at the very depth of our human existence. The place of our truest being, inner substance, or essential source. The treasure I’m talking about is the experience of learning how to turn within. In a word, it’s called meditation.
Sages, mystics, and saints from across world cultures and religions have written and taught volumes about this one practice… meditation. Christian mystic, Thomas Merton, spoke of it as the Centering Prayer. Zen students sit in “emptiness,” and Islamic and Jewish practices include spiritual practices of turning within.
Modern yoga practices are based on the ancient Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, a great sage from a millennium past, whose verses teach of meditation (dhyana) as, the stilling of the thought waves in the mind.
Quite prevalent across our modern society, “Mindfulness” practice is making its way into education, business, advertisements, and everyday life. Even the renowned Mayo Clinic, promotes mindfulness meditation for its healing benefits.
Perhaps it is best summed up by the Muslim, poet-saint Malwānā Rumi, who was quoted to have said, “Christian, Jew, Muslim, shaman, Zoroastrian, stone, ground, mountain, river, each has a secret way of being with the mystery, unique and not to be judged.”2
Meditation is perhaps my #1 “tool” and saving grace to live a life of connectedness, health, and blessings. Even more important, is that it’s available to everyone!
In his book, Meditate, the much beloved Siddha Yoga Guru, Baba Muktananda, explained that meditation was as natural as sleep to the human being. In order to access it, we have to learn to turn our attention within. Despite the fact that most of us in western culture were never taught how to actually meditate, the truth is that every one of us can learn to go within.
The BEST TOOL I’ve ever learned for immediate relief, composure, centering, and more, is ALSO the most simple and natural entry point for meditation. All it requires is our attention.
The most natural “tool” to turn within is our very own breath.
Near and dear, the most precious of friends, the breath is a magnificent and wonderful treasure available to each and every one of us alive today. It is our connection to existence, here and now.
Breathing in, we are accepting the gift of life in the form of oxygen, sunlight, and prana (energy).
Breathing out, we share our presence in the here-now, ready to accept the next breath anew.
With this simple action of respiration, we acknowledge our participation in the great play of life.
In my study of yoga and meditation, I learned that when the breath becomes steady and even, we begin to naturally experience a state of calmness, presence, and inner peacefulness. By learning to make the in breath and outgoing breath the same length, we naturally begin to turn within. And this is the first step in cultivating a meditation practice. Breathing.
By watching the breath, even for a moment, we begin to tune in to an inner wellspring that offers immediate renewal and calm.
Through repeated practice, our minds begin to enjoy the feeling of going within, and we are naturally drawn to repeat actions that feel good! By cultivating a loving relationship with our own breath, we begin to cultivate a practice of turning within.
All it takes is one breath.
Try this whenever you have need of solace, healing, calmness, or comfort.
• Simply stop, for just a moment, and turn your attention to your own breath. Watch the miracle of life as it unfolds naturally, easefully, and of its own accord.
• Breathe in deeply and exhale fully, one, two, or three times, watching the breath rise and fall with your full attention. Then allow your breath to return to it’s own, gentle pattern.
• Notice how it feels, or how it affects your body and inner state. Is there a sense of relaxation, reset, or renewal, even just a tiny morsel?
Finish with a little smile for giving yourself just a moment to breathe, and consider this old Tasmanian proverb, “Little by little, a little becomes a lot!”
A final thought. A dear friend and Speech and Language Pathologist used to teach my special needs students that we could actually make a mental “Note to Self” (imagine pointer finger touching side of forehead), to remind ourselves of something important at anytime and anywhere. So, let us make a note! Say this out loud with me:
Note to Self…….. Remember to BREATHE!
And for just that one little moment, anywhere, anytime, we can bathe ourselves in the loving, magnificent rejuvenation of our own Inner Being.
All it takes is one breath.
The breath is our own treasure for life. It can comfort and restore well-being. Allow it to carry you through all the days to come, with deep joy and equanimity. Namasté!
All blessings and love,
Note to Reader: If you or a dear one would like more information on learning meditation and mindfulness strategies, you are most welcome to contact me here.
Or, you may sign up for a free consultation to talk about your journey, and talk about further resources for practice and study. Often in the course of healing sessions, clients learn strategies for turning within, along with guided meditation for stress relief, relaxation, and transformational self-healing.
All references are hyper-linked to original source. For a list of references and further resources for meditation, please email me at jeannie.goldenlifehealing.com.