Consciousness is the quality of being awake and aware of one's mind and surroundings.
There are five natural states of consciousness. You are undoubtedly already familiar with the first three, but likely unfamiliar with the fourth and fifth.
The important thing to keep in mind is that meditation and mindfulness training teaches us how to be more conscious during the three ordinary states that we are all familiar. When we become more conscious during these ordinary states they transition into the fourth and fifth advanced states.
The following are the five natural states of consciousness:
I want to give you some suggestions that will help you better understand the mantra and how to use it.
A mantra is a sound, word, or phrase, often having no meaning whatsoever. Your mantra might be "Om," "I am," "So hum," "Om namah shivaya," or any number of different mantras that correspond to various teachers or traditions. For a detailed explanation of four useful mantras, visit my article here.
Your mantra is a tool, so let’s make sure it’s as sharp as possible.
The first important thing to understand is that mantras fall into two general categories, and one of the categories leads to the next. In other words, the two general categories of mantra present two distinct ways of using them. These are the two ways:
Posture is perhaps the first aspect of your meditation practice that demands consideration, as learning to sit properly is one of the most essential skills of meditation.
A good posture is one that provides a balance between being comfortable and alert, and one that you could easily maintain over an extended period of time. The essence of good posture is the ability to sit upright, not too hunched over.
There exist a variety of poses that enable good posture for the meditator. Here are the four most basic poses:
The way in which someone meditate depends much less on the two different styles —concentration and awareness — and much more on the object upon which someone meditates.
Therefore, I want to outline the six basic objects of meditation.
Keep in mind that when practicing awareness meditation, you expand your attention to include all six objects at once — or as many of them as you possibly can. When practicing concentration meditation, you isolate your attention to include only one of the six basic objects.
Breathing is such an important and fundamental aspect of what it means to be alive.
Yet so many people are unaware of their breathing.
Why should you be aware of your breathing? Because breath is the bridge between the body and the mind, and in order to maintain good health and transition into higher stages of spiritual development you must maintain harmony between your body and mind.