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Osho Meditation “Sufi Whirling”: A Powerful Method for Body and Mind Liberation

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Osho Meditation “Sufi Whirling” is based on an ancient Sufi technique. While the whole body is moving, you can witness your center being silent and still. Sufi whirling is considered to be one of the most powerful ancient techniques. It is so profound that even a one-time experience can be life-changing for you! If you want to achieve body and mind liberation, to freely express yourself, heal your heart chakra and improve your breathing, then Osho meditation “Sufi Whirling” is a great technique for you to try!

“Sufi whirling is one of the most ancient techniques, one of the most forceful. It is so deep that even a single experience can make you totally different. Whirl with open eyes, just like small children go on twirling, as if your inner being has become a center and your whole body has become a wheel, moving, a potter’s wheel, moving. You are in the center, but the whole body is moving.”Osho

I Bet You’ve Done It Before!

Whirling meditation Image

Sufi Whirling meditation requires the body to spin with outstretched arms while the mind is centered and still.

Whirling is normal for all children when they are innocent and full of joy. Didn’t you whirl around when you were a child? I bet you did! Do you remember how you were spinning with your eyes open when you were a child? Spinning as if your inner being has become the center and your whole body has become a moving wheel? You were centered, but your whole body was moving.

Without even knowing you were practicing Sufi Whirling meditation! We all did it spontaneously when we were children but as we grew up we seem to lose this spontaneity. That is why it is said that the dance takes us back to the repressed sensations from our childhood. And from my own experience, I can tell you that this technique is one of the most effective ways to heal your inner child!

What Does Sufi Whirling Represent?

Enlightening Rumi quotes on life image

The dancer is destined to whirl as the Earth around the Sun and so achieve harmony with the Universe itself. As the planets themselves rotate so the dance is performed spinning from the left side (which is the heart side)!

Traditionally, people wear a long white skirt for performing Sufi Whirling. A white skirt represents purity and its length enhances the circular motion of the dance. The long flowing skirt begins to spread naturally and fan out as the movement increases in momentum.

The spinning itself creates invisible, colorless, pure and transparent energy. The swirling skirt begins to move in endless waves and your aura envelopes the body in the same way as the sun bathes the Earth in its light.

Osho Meditation “Sufi Whirling”

It is recommended not to eat or drink anything for three hours before Sufi Whirling meditation. It is better to be barefoot and in loose clothes.

Meditation is divided into three stages – whirling, relaxation, and celebration.

How To Perform Osho Meditation “Sufi Whirling”?

Stand still. Cross your arms until they touch your shoulders – as if you are hugging yourself. Start moving very slowly. At the same time, spread your arms very slowly and gracefully – like a bird spreading its wings. Before they reach out, caress your face with them as a touch from the Divine.

Stage 1: Whirling (45 minutes)

Keep your eyes open and feel the center point of your body.

Lift your arm to shoulder height, with your right palm up and the left palm down.

Start turning around in a counterclockwise direction – at your own axis. Let your body be soft. Start slowly and after 15 minutes gradually increase the speed. You become a whirlpool of energy. Try to feel a storm of movement but at the same time make sure that the witness at the center is silent and still.

Gradually your eyes de-focus and the surroundings will become a whirl. As you move faster, you become more still inside.

Stage 2: Relaxation (15 minutes)

Let your body fall to the ground. Roll onto your stomach immediately so that your navel is in contact with the earth. If you feel discomfort lying this way, you can lie on your back.

Feel your body blending into the earth, as if a baby pressed to the mother’s breast. Keep your eyes closed and remain passive and silent for at least 15 minutes.

Stage 3: Celebration

Gradually, get up and join the celebration dance. Or you can sit still if you want.

After Whirling

Most people perspire while whirling. Therefore it is recommended to drink a couple of glasses of water after whirling.

Music for Whirling

Obviously, Sufi music is needed for whirling and this genre has a great deal of Arabic and Persian flavor.

Side Effects

It is quite common to feel disorientated, dizzy or nauseous during or after Whirling meditation. It is said to be an essential part of learning the dance and preparing the dancer to enter the state of ecstasy known as “mystical intoxication”. The intensity of such effect may vary from person to person.

However, there are some tips that can help you not to experience these side effects.

Whirling does not make you dizzy if you start slowly. You should move very slowly and remain at one point without moving away from it.

Whirling does not make you nauseous if you have not eaten a heavy meal just before you start.

The Bottom Line

Some people go on whirling for hours – as long as the bodies allow them. They do not stop on their own. When you’re practicing whirling a moment comes that you see yourself utterly still and silent. You become a center of the cyclone. Around the center, your body is moving, but there is a space which remains unmoved – that is your being.


Katya Ki is the Founder of SOLANCHA Magazine, a Metaphysical Expert, a Reiki Master, and Human Rights Attorney. She has been studying Eastern metaphysics, cosmology, and esotericism for almost 20 years now. And she's still discovering new knowledge, which is hidden in ancient teachings. During her pilgrimage to the monastery of Saint Catherine in Egypt, she discovered the SOLANCHA System. This is how the SOLANCHA journey started!

Meditation

6 Steps to Start a Meditation Practice: A Clear & Easy Guide

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Mindfulness is no longer considered a “soft skill,” but an essential part of overall health care among conscious people. Taking a few minutes to focus your mind each day can reduce stress, anxiety, pain, depression, and more. Meditation practice is getting more and more popular all around the world because without mindfulness it’s really hard to stay healthy and balanced in the modern world. If you want to start practicing meditation but don’t know how to start, this clear & easy guide is for you! To make it simple we will guide you through 6 easy steps to start a meditation practice.

What Is Meditation?

Meditation is a practice where an individual uses a technique – such as mindfulness or focusing the mind on a particular object, thought, or activity – to train attention and awareness, and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state.

Meditation isn’t about becoming a different person, a new person, or even a better person. It’s all about developing such skills as awareness and mindfulness, the ability to be present, and getting a healthy sense of perspective. During meditation practice, you don’t need to turn off your thoughts or feelings. You’re learning to observe them without judgment. And eventually, you may start to better understand them as well.

When you learn mindfulness you gain the ability to be present, to rest in the here and now, fully engaged with whatever you’re doing at the moment.

Meditation Benefits

Meditation guide image

The popularity of meditation is increasing as more people discover its benefits. Here are some of them:

  • Reduces stress & anxiety;
  • Promotes mental & emotional health;
  • Increases focus & concentration;
  • Enhances self-awareness;
  • Can decrease blood pressure;
  • Improves attention and clarity of thinking;
  • Increases positive feelings and actions toward yourself and others;
  • Improves the immune system;
  • Increases our capacity for empathy & compassion;
  • Can help fight addictions;
  • Increases the energy level;
  • Improves sleep;
  • Increases serotonin production that improves mood and behavior;
  • Improves emotional stability;
  • Promotes clarity and peace of mind;
  • Can diminish the perception of pain in the brain which may help treat chronic pain;
  • Increases creativity;
  • Develops intuition;
  • Expands consciousness.

6 Steps to Start a Meditation Practice

Enough theory! Let’s dive into practice! Here are 6 easy steps to start a meditation practice.

#1: Take a sitting position

Steps to start meditation image

Make a commitment to sit still and watch what happens. Do not pick up the phone, ignore the doorbell, do not add another task to your to-do list. Just sit and observe the thoughts that arise and pass through your mind.

If you’re just starting your meditation practice you will probably be surprised at how difficult it can be just to sit still for 10 minutes. However, in the process, you may learn something important about the properties of your restless mind and the ever-changing nature of life.

#2: Listen to the sounds of life

Close your eyes and tune in to sounds – both external and internal. Most likely, at first, you will only hear the most obvious sounds (like a sound of a car passing by your house or sound of a barking dog), but over time you will discover new layers of sounds that you have not previously paid attention to. Observe what you hear, not clinging to it, but not resisting it. Note that the world seems more alive as your awareness of the present moment deepens.

#3: Practice mindfulness

practice mindfulness meditation image

Pay attention to the sensations of the present moment – feelings of warmth and coolness, hardness and softness, pressure and lightness. What parts of your body touch the ground? How does the shape of the body change with each breath? How does your experience change over time? Developing awareness of the present moment will encourage a calmer and more attentive mind.

#4: Follow the breath

Focus your attention on the breath – on every breath you take in and out. Don’t force your breath in any way. Just observe it with your inner vision, the similar way as you would watch a tennis ball bounce from one side of the court to the other during the game. When you notice that the mind is wandering, just turn your focus back to your breath.

#5: Repeat the mantra

You don’t have to choose a complicated mantra in Sanskrit. Start with choosing just a positive word, phrase, prayer, or fragment of a poem and repeat it. Let its rhythm and meaning soothe you and bring you into a quiet, contemplative state of ease. When you notice that your mind is distracted by other thoughts, just redirect it back to the words of your mantra.

#6: Practice kindness

6 steps to meditating image

Direct your attention to someone who needs love, compassion, and healing right now. Mentally send this person love, happiness, and well-being.

The Bottom Line

For many people, meditation practice has become as essential as taking a shower or brushing teeth. Give it a chance – practice it daily, and very soon you will experience all the benefits this practice can give. Once you get into the habit and experience all of the mental clarity, emotional stability, physical relaxation that the meditation offers, not practicing meditation would seem unimaginable!


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Meditation

Gyan Mudra: the Key to Deep Meditation

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Gyan Mudra, or Mudra of Knowledge, is one of the most important mudras. It symbolizes openness to the wisdom of the Universe. Gyan Mudra practice stimulates wisdom and knowledge and evokes the most expansive version of the self, so you can flow through your life lessons with ease and calm.

In this article, I will share with you how to perform Gyan Mudra and receive its benefits.

What Is Gyan Mudra?

Gyan is a Sanskrit word that refers to ‘Knowledge’ or ‘Wisdom’. Mudra means ‘Gesture’ or ‘Symbol’.

Connecting the fingers in certain combinations, you can activate the meridians and direct energy throughout the body, restore the flow of energy and eliminate “breakdowns” in diseased organs thus improve your health.

Different positions of the fingers have the ability to close or clear the energy channels. In addition, performing mudras, we affect the biologically active points of the palms and fingers.

When performing Gyan Mudra, we use the upper phalanges of our fingers. On the upper phalanges of the fingers, there are a lot of nerve endings, which when connected to each other create something like a “short circuit of electricity”, because of which the energy does not diverge in the outer space, but is concentrated inside. It helps to create the correct redirection of energy in the body, for the control of prana, and for changing the psycho-emotional state.

To perform Gyan Mudra, we use the tip of the index finger with the tip of the thumb. And there is a reason for that.

Each finger of the hand corresponds to certain energy. And each tip of each finger is responsible for a specific part of the body.

The index finger is associated with knowledge, wisdom, and self-confidence. It is connected to our life force.

The thumb is responsible for our ego, will, and logic. Also, this finger is associated with wisdom, mind, and awareness.

By connecting the index finger with the thumb, we create a powerful gesture that activates all the components these fingers responsible for.

Also, it is important to know that each finger is associated with one of the 5 elements.

Fingers Corresponding to the 5 Elements image

Thumb represents the Fire element (Agni).

The index finger is associated with the energy of the Air element.

Gyan mudra mainly works on increasing the Air element inside the body. Increased Air element helps the brain to work more efficiently.

Gyan Mudra Benefits

Mudra of knowledge in yoga practice Image

This beautiful mudra has lots of benefits. Here are some of them.

The Gyan Mudra:

  • helps to eliminate stress, sadness, and sorrow;
  • gives hope and confidence for the future;
  • improves concentration;
  • helps to process large amounts of information;
  • improves memory and attention;
  • stimulates the Root chakra;
  • heals Kapha and Pitta Dosha;
  • eases tension and depression;
  • calms down;
  • brings spiritual openness and ease in meditation;
  • boosts the air element;
  • stimulates the brain;
  • empowers the mind, nervous system, and pituitary gland;
  • prevents insomnia.

How to perform?

Lightly touch the tip of the thumb with the tip of the index finger, keeping the other fingers straight but relaxed. Do this with both the right and left hand and hold for at least a few minutes. In Kundalini Yoga, this mudra is usually practiced with the hands resting on the knees and the elbows straight.

When performing this mudra, it is recommended to visualize white color. For example, a white wall or a piece of paper.

You can perform this mudra with only one hand. This is especially appropriate during pranayama practice when the other hand is used to regulate breathing by pinching one nostril.

It is best to perform Gyan mudra for 30-45 minutes daily. You can also do this mudra in 3 shifts of 15 minutes.

Morning time is the best time to perform the Mudra of Knowledge.

Side Effects And Precautions

Gyan Mudra Practice Image

Gyan mudra mainly increases the Air element in the body. Therefore, if you have any health problems related to stomach or digestion problems, this mudra might increase these problems.

In Vata dosha, the Air element is already present. Therefore, if you have Vata dosha, perform this mudra moderately.

The Bottom Line

It is believed that Gautama Buddha practiced the Mudra of Knowledge during his meditation for the enlightenment, beneath the bodhi tree. Gyan Mudra is a great tool for deepening your meditation practice and enhancing the power of your concentration.


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Meditation

Chaturtha Pranayama: Discover A New Dimension Of Awareness

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Chaturtha pranayama is both a meditation practice and pranayama that helps to enter deep meditation and the transcendental state of being. This pranayama is also called a “pranayama of the fourth state” which means a transcendental state beyond words. Chaturtha pranayama practice leads to a deeper awareness and helps to prepare for more advanced meditation practices. 

In this article, we will share with you what Chaturtha pranayama is and how to perform it correctly. Read on!

Chaturtha Pranayama

The Sanskrit word ‘chaturtha’ means ‘the fourth’. There are two reasons for this name:

#1

The first three types of pranayama are widely regarded as pooraka (inhalation), rechaka (exhalation) and kumbhaka (retention). Chaturtha pranayama is the fourth type that follows them. In this case, the Sanskrit word ‘Chaturtha’ can be translated as ‘the fourth pranayama’.

#2

According to the Mandukya Upanishad, there are four states of awareness:

1. Jagrat – is a waking state that people experience whenever they are not asleep. It corresponds to the externalized perception of the world;

2. Swapna – is the dream state, which corresponds to the perception of the subconscious mind;

3. Sushupti – is a dreamless state, which corresponds to an intuitive perception of the collective unconscious;

4. Turiya (Chaturtha) – is the transcendental state where words and definitions fail to reach.

Turiya is a state of deep meditation, a transcendental level of being. It is very different from the other three states of awareness. It is also called “spiritual awakening“.

There is nothing to say about this mysterious level of being since its understanding lays beyond words and can be understood only through experience. That is why it is called simply “the fourth (state)”. When the mind is deeply asleep and does not dream, but the consciousness is awake, this is Turiya.

Instead of trying to understand Turiya with our logical mind, we should try to experience it. Chaturtha pranayama is designed to help us with this!

How to Perform Chaturtha Pranayama?

Deep meditation practice image

This pranayama is, in fact, easy to do. It has five stages (five processes):

  1. Sitting straight and motionless, we observe our calm, deep breathing. (At least 20 breath cycles or 5-12 minutes).
  2. Continuing to breathe as well, mentally repeat the mantra “OM”: on the inhale say ‘O’, and on the exhale M-m-m (do it mentally, your mouth should be closed). Do it for 5-12 minutes.
  3. Keep doing steps 1 and 2 and start concentrating on the point between the eyebrows or on the tip of the nose. Do it for another 5-12 minutes.
  4. Keep breathing and repeating the mantra. And now concentrate on the Sahasrara chakra. With the inhale and awareness of the sound ‘O’, you’re focusing at the chakras along the spine in descending order: SahasraraAjnaVishuddhaAnahataManipuraSvadhisthanaMuladhara. With an exhale and the mental sound “M-m-m” you are going up the same line: Muladhara – Svadhistana – Manipura – Anahata – Vishuddha – Ajna – Sahasrara (you DO not need to say the name of the chakras to yourself). You do so a few “circles”. It should take about 5-12 minutes.
  5. Now concentrate on the point between your eyebrows or on the tip of your nose. Continue to mentally chant the mantra “OM ” except now do not observe the breath. Do it as long as possible (5-15 minutes). This leads to deep meditation. This is the main technique of Chaturtha pranayama practice. Do not rush to complete this stage, give yourself time to achieve success in it.

Helpful Tip:

  1. For your convenience, you can set a quiet timer on your phone. If you do each stage for 12 minutes, the total practice (5 stages) will take 60 minutes. If you do each stage for 5 minutes, the total practice will take 25 minutes.
  2. Make sure in advance that no one and nothing will bother you during your practice. In this state, a person is very vulnerable and it is easy to get an extremely negative stressful experience if somebody will interrupt your practice.
  3. It is best to sit in the Lotus pose while performing this practice. If for any reason this pose isn’t comfortable for you then sit on a chair with your back being straight.


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