TO begin with I would like to give you the methods for performing Meditation and using Breath Technique that are incredibly important to any magical or spiritual practice. These methods were taught to me from a Kabbalistic point of view, but they are not restrictive and can be used by anyone following any Path.
The methods we usually find in lessons and documentation pertaining to meditation are often found to be extremely tedious from the standpoint of bringing boring. We must remember that we are (well, I am and I think most people in this group will be) Western folk. Apart from a different physical framework as opposed to our Eastern Brothers, causing it to be a little more difficult to get into many of the positions for practice such as full lotus, we also need things to be a little more active. To sit in meditation for an hour and just focus on the tip of your nose is extremely difficult. We live in a fast food society and this tends to move across to all aspects of our life. I am not using this as an excuse but many people wonder why they don’t have the proper dedication to do the necessary work, and this is the answer. Therefore, instead of thinking we are useless at this or that because we can’t stick to it, why don’t we find methods that will allow us to stay interested? This comes in the form of active practices. Obviously when we start to make more actual progress in our work, we find that we have something to work for and do become more dedicated, but still, we remain part of the Western World, and must never forget that.
So, moving right along, here are the set of meditation practices that I have come to perform. For a better explanation and an actual visual demonstration which walks you through the practices step by step, you can always get my Meditation and Breath DVD Workshop.
When doing these practices the best way to sit is in an upright chair with back straight and feet planted firmly on the floor, facing West. The direction of west is merely a symbolic aspect of the Western Mystery Tradition, so you may prefer to face a different direction.
IN Hebrew there are three letters that are called the Mother Letters, those being Aleph, Mem and Shin. These three letters also correspond to the three active elements Air, Water and Fire, so when doing the actual breathing you will be breathing in the letter Aleph/Air and then breathing out Mem/Water which is on the right side of the head and Shin/Fire which is on the left side. With the elements on the sides of the head, this creates balance of opposing elements with Air bridging them in the middle. Water and Fire also correspond to Female and Male and in many esoteric documents dealing with energy flowing in the body you will find mention of the masculine and feminine sides of the body.
- Breath in with the sound of “AH”. As you do this your mouth will be open to produce the sound of AH, but the sound will be inhaled so it will be very breathy. As you breath in imagine yourself sitting in a sea of energy that you pull in through your anus to fill your body. This sea of energy is Avir which is Universal Energy.
- Pause briefly when you have breathed in and then breath out with another breathy sound of “MMMMSSSHHHHHH”, this being the letters Mem and Shin being breathed out. Whilst doing this breath the energy back out into the sea of Avir.
- Pause for as long as your body requires before breathing in again. We do not hold the breath, we pause, and this means that you allow the body to let you know when to breath. If you find that this pause between out and in breath becomes incredibly long, don’t panic, it is normal. The body will breath when it requires it.
- Repeat three times minimum.
TUNING AND TONING THE BODY
Following straight on from the Mother Breath we start to breath energy, Avir, into the body parts and then vibrate that energy within the body parts. To do this what we first need to accomplish is to smile warmly within the body part we are working with. What this means is that as you start, you picture your toes, and then you smile warmly inside them, actually sense and feel the warmth of your smile, and then open the pores like a flower and breath in with the AH breath, drawing Avir into the toes. If it helps, either picture a little mouth on each toe that is smiling warmly, or fill the toes with a warm golden light and feel that warm smile inside them.
Once we have breathed the Avir into the toes, then we breath out with a loud hum. This is the MMM sound with the noise. So as with the previous method you breathed the MMM out, this time you make the noise and you hum. As you hum, the energy in your toes is vibrated. You then pause between the breaths whilst moving onto the next body part, filling it with the warm smile, open up the pores like a flower and then breath the AH breath into the body part, and continue on that basis.
At first it is best to go through the smaller body parts, so you will follow this list one at a time:
Shins and calves
Anus (actually inside the anus)
Pelvis and buttocks (including hips)
Chest and lungs
Forearms and elbows
Wrists and hands with fingers
Back of neck
Scalp (from base of skull over the head to the top of the forehead)
Nose and sinuses
Mouth, cheeks and chin
When you become more practiced you can start to combine body parts into larger areas, such as toes, feet and ankles as one, then legs, then pelvis, then lower torso, etc. However, you will find that taking the smaller body parts and working through the slowly puts you in a much deeper state of meditation.
When you have been right through the body, focus on the entire body and breath in and out into the whole body, repeat three times.
PORE BREATHING THROUGH THE HANDS
Now for the fun part. In this practice you will actually feel energy between your hands. A lot of people try to develop this skill but don’t succeed. Well, if you have performed all of the previous meditations, you will definitely succeed.
- Slowly stand up from your chair with your hands dangling by your sides.
- Start to move your hands in extremely tiny circles, so small they are hardly visible. This stirs up energy around you hands and they may feel like the blood is rushing or being pulled from them down into the earth, or that they are just being pulled down with force.
- Then with an AH in breath, lift your hands slowly to be in front of you with palms facing each other about shoulder width apart.
- When you breath out you will hum and See or imagine energy pouring out of the palms of your hands and building up between them. This energy is called Ruchaniyut, or Spiritual Energy.
- Then breath in with the AH breath and pull Avir into the palms of your hands.
- Breath out again with a hum and push the Ruchaniyut out of the palms of your hands.
- Carry on doing the in and out breath. What you start to feel is that when you breath Avir into the palms they will move together like magnets. Start the process by moving them slowly together by yourself and it will then take over. When breathing out, the hands will move apart.
- After a few breaths move your hands in and out very slightly as if you were holding a beach ball and pressing on it. You will feel a resistance between your hands.
- If you do not feel it very strongly, try turning your hands 90 degrees in opposite directions with palms facing and push in that position.
- When done, breath in with an AH breath and move your hands slowly back down to your sides. You will feel a pull again.
Then sit down and either finish the meditation by stretching, or continue with any work that you wish to perform. What we usually follow with in Temple is spontaneous singing which we will discuss later.