thelerner

Group Guided Meditation Practice

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There are some excellent guided meditations around.  I was thinking we could listen to them once a day for a week, and record what we find.  What feelings, benefits and learning they might give us.  I'm proposing we start one this Monday, Dec 25th, and listen to the recording here preferably each day for a week and write down our observations.  

 

For the first one I present Barry Long, a mystic, perhaps best known as a major influence behind Eckhardt Tolle.   Long has a soothing voice, with straight forward methods of removing thoughts.  This meditation is from a youtube video Start Meditating Now by Barry Long, originally 36.51 minutes, after listening once or twice, feel free to fast forward to 6:24 minutes (or 10:24) depending on how much pre-instruction you want.   You can listen at your computer or transfer it to an MP3 player to listen to in bed or during meditation. 

 

I encourage people to give this a try.  This is a great experiential meditation, with imo important lessons.  Like many mystics, Long sees thoughts as addictions, once we get away from habitual 'junk' thoughts, we get more instep with reality.    Generally a good thing.

 

Meditation_guided_Barry_Long_1.mp3

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iB_S4jLJ3KI&list=PLmOtSswGcXa4bmB2BiYbZMsO0CM9w_OsY

 

Edited by thelerner
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Very relaxing and very basic.

 

The only emotion I had to hold in my stomach was sorrow.  But there was something holding me back from wanting to tell it to leave me.  It's as though if I didn't carry sorrow over Joe's death, he wouldn't be here at all.  I'm going to give these meditations a try and see what happens.  But I also don't want the feeling that I'm rushing things.

 

Thank you, Michael.

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Listened today.  Started it at 10:25, cause its a bit wordy before then.   I like the early bit on concentrating on the third eye, finding the grey spot there.  It's unique for having you fill up stomach, hold and squeeze, moving the air around.  Shades of some of the yogic stomach practices.   The focus there reminds me of Anna Wise's focus on the tongue, ie a point that tends to diminish thought. 

 

Very little induction, 'feel the sensations in the hand' and suggests you get to the point where the sensation is a little needles and pins-y.   I like his attention on the lips, that's unique, and we forget the lips sensitivity and sensuality.  His relaxation induction is good having tension fall into the stomach, the natural garbage pit of the stomach, for physical and mental stress. 

 

He talks about unconscious tension, and getting rid of it.  Like Stephen Levine work, using the stomach area as a field of awareness to discover tensions and stress..thoughts.  Learning to see emotions in the stomach, and letting them drop, disrupting the cycle.  If you can't take action.. let it drop.  Resist the urge to think, if no action is called for. 

 

'..Don't think, hold the emotion, be the emotion, be the pain, but don't try to escape it by thinking.. Don't move, bear it.. rid yourself of this alien thing by confronting it.  Don't run from it..  it is using you.  Face up to it, or it will be back tomorrow to antagonize you again..  By refusing to think.. you starve it..'

 

 

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This works particularly well with me in what concerns fear. When I decide to just feel the damn thing what follows usually is some sort of muscular release accompanied by a chill and the sensation that "something" (not a simple energy release) is leaving my body.

 

Rumi – Guest House

This being human is a guest house
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

~Rumi

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Listening to it today, (starting at 10:25, making it a 25 min meditation) I focused on 3 parts.

1) relaxation and preparing the stomach region as as a emotional diagnosis center.

2) forgiving and releasing old grudges against friends and family with an example of using a father.

3) expanding love, in that love must active.  Not I love you, but I must love you more.. Love should active.  Listening to the birds, you should hear love..

 

What did others get? 

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Listened this morning.  Focused more on love.  It shouldn't be passive.. not I love you.. but striving to love more.. actively.  He gave an interesting definition of Love is leaving your old self behind.. (something like that).. Love is being new.   Much of the later narrative is leaving old grudges and there programming behind.  ie the person who hurt you did so according to there conditioning and programming.. doing the best they can under there own karmic burden, so move on, drop the negativity.

 

Not a bad philosophy.  Course dropping the negativity doens't mean forgetting or putting yourself at risk.  Just stopping the brain dark narrative every time you see or think of the person.  Let the past's emotional burdens die, keep the lessons, stop the self indulgent victimy thoughts that waste your energy and may be throwing stress hormones into your system. 

 

HIs work with the stomach reminds me of Stephen Levine's who also thought of the stomach as an area where emotions leave there marks.  And if we were more sensitive to the area we'd know ourselves and state of mind more intimately and get better understanding of why we do the things we do.  Its these emotions and the programs they trigger that lead to so many of our (rational and irrational) decisions.  Like a (mis)quote from the Matrix- Our decision has already been made, now we're just looking for rationals to justify it.

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Really nice observations, Michael.

 

I just thought I'd mention that I may not be participating to the degree you are in this exercise.  I look forward to your comments, but I don't know if I have it in me to follow suit right now.  The desire just isn't there, at least not yet.  I really appreciate your attempts to help get me through this; things are slowly getting a little better. 

 

And again, I reiterate, you are the very kindest man in the world.  You certainly walk your talk, and I for one really appreciate it.

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No sweat, maybe I'll do a couple of these and see if anyone wants to play along.  Maybe it'll inspire someone in the future, or more probably its a self interest kind of thing that isn't everyone's cup of tea.

 

also..

Thanks for the kind words.. hopefully I'm in the upper 50% in kindness, but probably not cracking the top 10% :) .   Most often I walk a crooked path.  Take this heart stuff.  In truth I like my neighbors, but don't love them.  Humanity is my species, but I don't really love it.. they're okay.  My default mode is respect and open mindedness, but not love.

 

Sure what the world needs now, is love, sweet love, but it'd be a major improvement if it got more mutual respect, open mindedness and bit more kindness.  That'd be enough for me. 

 

With love comes responsibility, and I don't want that.  I'll give a beggar change, a buck, some food, but if I loved them, like I do my family, I'd have to go further, be responsibility for them.  I don't want 'love' to be a motto.   For it to be real for me means effort and attachment. 

 

Part of me wants to have a more open heart, but a larger part fears the impossible work that would go along with that.  I am no saint (or want to be).  So generally I do little bits, small kindnesses, but loving my neighbors.. not really, though I'm having a bunch over on the 31st. 

 

Thinking in these terms, I probably have some guided meditations that touch on the open heart.. Laughing meditation, secret smile, heart at peace, chod.. probably have a couple Loving Kindness types.  Perhaps next week.. or month.. maybe. 

 

I do think there's greater power in listening to an audio everyday for a week, rather then just once or twice.  On the other hand, they are up against a lifetime of habits, so a few minutes of rah rah go go, isn't gonna shake much.  Real change isn't as easy as reading a slogan or listening to a tape.  Yet nuts crack, seasons change.. when the time is right, people change direction.

 

 

 

 

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We did a bad a job of knowing our neighbors when we lived in a condo in the city.  But really its as easy as making a pot of coffee and making a call or ringing a door bell.  We need to go beyond knowing our neighbors and being friends with them.  It vastly improves our lives, from simple friendship to borrowing to life saving.  

 

It's worth the time and repeated effort.  Failing and being turned down numerous times, until random factors align and you share a coffee and find out a little about them.  Then the next step you borrow from or use there expertise, again a bonding experience, because people want to help other, to feel part of community.  If the coffee or tea doesn't go over, ring their bell, ask for 2 eggs, even if you don't need them.  Nothing tastier then purloined scrambled eggs.  <I borrowed eggs from my neighbor George once, needed them to bake something.  Got home, prepared the dough, cracked the egg to find it was hard boiled!>

 

Be a little nosy, find out about there lives, share you own.  Its important, we're social animals and need to interaction.

 

 

Back to OP.  Things I got out of listening today.  We create entities/internal zombies when we carry out inner rant/dialogs with people we're annoyed at; after the fact kind.  It's one thing if they're short and lead to action, but when they ramble on circularly we are doing ourselves harm.  Long's solution is to deep breaths, starve the thinking mind.  Not to different then the old fashion advice to count 20 elephants.. or whatever.

 

Also he mentioned at one point '..Love or Goodwill'.. if I have a sticking point with the word love, I should substitute Goodwill.  Focus on more goodwill to others in thoughts and deeds.   Make Goodwill a point of meditation and investigation.

 

There was a third point.. what was it..  oh well.. gone.  Perhaps it will come back tomorrow. 

 

12/30 Not much to report, so I'll keep this in an older post.

Insomnia struck last night, so got to bed 3:45 or 4ish.  Listening to audio, as usual starting at 10:25 into it.  Also as usual listening in bed, whereas I believe he'd prefer one to be sitting in meditation.  Enjoyed, it certainly put me into a meditative state and by the end, put me completely under or back to sleep.  Which is what I needed. 

 

   
Edited by thelerner
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Next week, Monday January 1st, I'm thinking a new Guided meditation for people to listen to and write about and discuss.  Less a learning experience like the previous one rather for simple enjoyment.  Hypnosis for Happiness and Contentment by Kim Walsh.  She has a beautiful lilting voice.  The audio is about 23 minutes long.   Once you get into you can start it around minute 6 as I recall. 

 

Here is a link to the youtube version- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=veETG-PczWk

A link to it as an mp3 below.  Nice to put it onto your phone or mp3 player for morning listening.

Hypno_for_happiness_and_contentment_1.mp3

 

A classic pleasant relaxing hypnotic reading.   One with more bells and whistles then the previous.  I encourage people to give this one a try or one of her other audios. 

Let me know what you think.

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I listened to your recently posted meditation just now, and I'm so relaxed it is actually hard for my fingers to type.  What a beautiful meditation.  Thank you, Michael.

 

I laid on the floor as it was playing, and it's always funny how animals can sense the change in (maybe?) vibrational frequency.  Both dogs lay down on top of me as I was relaxing.  Made it just a bit harder to breathe but the experience of the three bodies as one felt so tingly that I just let them stay.

 

My first husband and I (not Joe) went camping in the desert many years ago.  A moonless night, pitch black, the stars so vibrant that it was incredible.  He had started a huge bonfire and in addition to the stars we were watching little red embers fly up into the sky, among the stars.  When your meditation mentioned the black sky, twinkling stars, and falling stardust, it immediately swept me away to that night in the desert.  I hadn't thought of that in years.  What a beautiful memory.

 

Well, that was my New Years Eve gift to myself.  And a beautiful one it was.  Thank you again, Mr. M.  I'll be listening to it again.

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Posted (edited)

One thing I like about the meditation is how near the end the stars come down and cover your body with good energy, awakening the endorphins within. 

Not that I heard that part this morning.  Some time after the leaf count I lost awareness and when I got it back she was talking about a cup found along the walking path.  I'd fallen asleep and awoken during her Jung meditation.  for those interested the cup I found was a simple tin one. 

Edited by thelerner

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I just did it too.
Generated just the right amount of gratitude and calmness, moved my imagination into familiar world of fantasy. The stars were pretty indeed.

After leaf 86 I drifted into thoughts of loved ones and warmth of human company.

I wish everyone to experience these good feelings as much as possible throughout 2018 :D.

Thanks ML :)

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On Monday there are some new meditations to try.  We've gone through Barry Long's which is excellent for teaching the mind to be quieter and opening the heart.  This week Kim Walsh's very pleasant trip Hypnosis for Happiness & Contentment.  Next weeks lets be productive.  Part of being productive isn't listening to long inductions.  So here are 2 short ones.

 

A morning and an evening meditation on setting your day right. 

 

I've played Evening Inventory Meditation (11 minutes) for years, its by My Meditation Station, a great podcast.  Nice short induction and instead escaping your problems, you recall and face them.  Make mental notes to apologize and do better. 

 

Morning Meditation Setting Intentions (11 min) is a newer addition.  Lina Grace has a beautiful voice that is a pleasure to listen to.  The battle for productivity is one that pits our now self- who prefers instant gratification, against our future self- who wants grow and thrive.  This meditation has you imagine fast forwarding to the evening and feeling good about all you'll accomplish, helping to focus you on getting things done. 

 

Do one, do two, do none.. let me know what you think..

 

Evening_Inventory_Meditation.mp3

MORNING_MEDITATION_Setting_Intentions_1.mp3

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Posted (edited)
On ‎1‎/‎1‎/‎2018 at 2:13 PM, thelerner said:

.  for those interested the cup I found was a simple tin one. 

 

 

Humility.

 

I just did the beautiful evening meditation.  It dovetailed so nicely with my recovery program from alcohol, as it talked of releasing resentments and fears, which is something that I try to do nightly anyway.  But as a meditation with the lovely music and gentle sounds of the waves, it was twice as relaxing.  I realized from listening to this meditation that the only resentment I am carrying around is a political one, and how silly is that?  That is something that I am totally powerless over, so why worry?  I need to cut that loose and try to look at it more as entertainment...

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, manitou said:

  I realized from listening to this meditation that the only resentment I am carrying around is a political one, and how silly is that?  That is something that I am totally powerless over, so why worry?  I need to cut that loose and try to look at it more as entertainment...

Not just politics but news itself, can have a poisonous affect.  We get, for free, in volume.. a distillation of the very worst things going on it world, told in a way that is.. tantalizing. 

 

This gets to Barry Long themes, think enough to decide if you can take action on a thing.. but if you can't.. keep a quiet mind.  In the second video, Kim Walsh's ideal of Happiness & Contentment lie in a quiet mind.  We torture ourselves as much as any medieval demon with our circuitous thoughts.  The angry bitter arguments we recite to ourselves do us no good.  And releasing them out into the wild isn't great either.  State your truth and walk away.. body and mind.  

 

Course, do as I say not as I do.  I'm a news junkie.  With a silly undisciplined mind that keeps me up til the wee hours of the night.  I'm sipping pineapple rum as I write (iced and watered)..  Sometimes good isn't in our nature. 

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On 1/5/2018 at 2:56 PM, thelerner said:

On Monday there are some new meditations to try.

 

Morning Meditation Setting Intentions (11 min) is a newer addition.  Lina Grace has a beautiful voice that is a pleasure to listen to.  The battle for productivity is one that pits our now self- who prefers instant gratification, against our future self- who wants grow and thrive.  This meditation has you imagine fast forwarding to the evening and feeling good about all you'll accomplish, helping to focus you on getting things done. 

 

Do one, do two, do none.. let me know what you think..

 

Evening_Inventory_Meditation.mp3

MORNING_MEDITATION_Setting_Intentions_1.mp3

Morning Meditation is interesting because its mostly empty and there is no particular induction.  Rather it begins with a call to remember that you were recently in that twilight area between sleep and wakefulness.  That deeply relaxed hynagogic state where the body is supremely relaxed, the mind slow and open.  I've always found it to be one of the greatest luxuries in life, staying in that state. 

 

So the induction is remember that state, feel it, go back to it.  Then imagining it's night and remember what a good day it was, what goals have been accomplished.   Mostly blank except for the ending.  Very NLPish. 

 

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I really like the morning meditation, Lerner.  The small choices are at the crux of everything, it seems.  There are so many things I can do differently to start a new life for myself, and to this point the depression has kept me from doing them.  Hearing her talk about that was a real good reminder for me; there are many small choices I can make which will cause me to isolate less.

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Some of the best guided meditations are from the Indian tradition called Yoga Nidra.  There are dozens if not hundreds of them available and they are wonderful for putting you into a deep state of openness and relaxation.  They tend to be less visual then most western scripts, so work well with people who don't visualize as well.  

 

Here is a link to a short simple 16 minute one- http://www.yoganidranetwork.org/mp3/bridget-reader-yn-1

Here's a nice one for sleep- http://www.yoganidranetwork.org/mp3/yoga-nidra-good-night-sleep

Here's a long one with nice tibetan bells  http://www.yoganidranetwork.org/mp3/colour-ling-mann

I encourage people to go to http://www.yoganidranetwork.org and try out a few, find one they like, download it and work with it.  Often there are bits we miss the first few listenings that have experiential teachings. 

 

For those with Amazon Alexa units, you can Open up the skill Yoga Nidra, then anytime you want to hear a nice one you simply say Play Yoga Nidra and it plays. 

 

I notice the Yoga Nidra network changes there selection.  One of favorite longer ones Beach and Stars is no longer available.  So if you like one, download and why not throw them the organization a pound or two for it.

 

Google or search youtube for Yoga nidra and you can find many other sources for them.

 

 

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On 1/15/2018 at 4:01 PM, thelerner said:

 

Here's a long one with nice tibetan bells  http://www.yoganidranetwork.org/mp3/colour-ling-mann

I put down this one without listening to the whole thing.  Not bad, but a lotta kid noise in the background.  So much that it kinda cancels itself out, thus not so bad .  Maybe its the voyeur in me but I find meditating by a public pool to be very nice.  There are so much conversation and noise that it blends away..  The above reminds me of that, and the bells are nice.

 

This week I recommend finding some other yoga nidra's.  Again looking through podcasts and youtubes, finding ones that connect.  That's what this is really about, we're all different and its nice to find a perfect one, until it's not anymore and search goes on.

 

Til then I'll add a nice longer one.  The Beach and Stars I mentioned earlier.  This one is long and blends traditional yoga nidra and pleasant guided meditation imagery.  As I recall it cuts down the usual body sensing.  Instead of right hand thumb, right hand finger one etc., it does both 'sides' at once.  I was just listening to another nidra that began with the tip of the nose and worked out.  Nice to hear variety. 

 

In any case here is one of my favorites, excellent first thing in the morning on a lazy Saturday or Sunday.- Yoga_Nidra_Beach_and_Stars_42_min_1.mp3

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Often short is good.  Once your used to the relaxed focused state of hypnosis you don't need long introductions.  With that in mind here are two excellent from Kim Walsh, one I had full length earlier, but here it is shortened.  The Happiness one, without all the relaxation and leaf counting, here it starts at the river, where the sky will darken and stars will fall and fill you with good feelings.

 

Likewise here is the a meditation of mindful eating without the longer relaxation and walk through the garden.  Instead you're close to the hotel, the nice elevator induction to the theater where you learn a bit watching your healthier self on screen.

Both in Kim Walsh delightful voice.

 

Shorter_Mindful_Eating_Meditation.mp3

Shorter_Happiness_meditation.mp3

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