The Body Meditation Process
Take 20 minutes to sit down, relax, and allow Karen to introduce the practice to you and guide you through a sample meditation. Press Play (above). (This is the first recorded version; we will update it based on feedback and input. Thank you for your patience.)
Below are the step-by-step instructions for practicing Body Meditation™.
BODY MEDITATION™ instructions:
The only rule in the body meditation™ practice is you must keep your mind’s awareness in your body. Period! Nothing else! Just keep your awareness inside yourself.
This sounds very simple. However, your mind is not used to being present in your body and it takes a little bit of training. To keep your awareness in the body, you might think of your body as a container. The parameters of the container are from the tip of your head to the bottoms of your feet and everything in between. You can explore anything and everything inside the body-container.
Keep in mind the exploration is a feeling process, not a thinking-intellectualizing journey. The process is about feeling; you get to feel your way to the deepest state of ease.
There are tools to help you focus. Awareness on your breath is the primary tool and while meditating, you can come back to breath awareness as often as you like. The other tools include affirmative words or mantra, gentle movement, and descriptive words.
Realize that at first, your mind may bounce around to various parts of your body rapidly. This is fine, but do not let your mind wander outside of the body--catch it and bring it back. When you notice yourself not present and you realize your mind is wandering away, gently come back to awareness of your breath and feeling your way back to ease. Know that all forms of meditation are a process, and this one like all others, will evolve.
Tool Number One: Breath Awareness
- Start seated comfortably; in a cross legged position on the floor (use pillows or a meditation cushion to make yourself comfortable) or sit in a chair with both feet flat on the floor. Sit slightly forward on your sitting bones, with your spine lifted tall. Feel for your center.
- Close your eyes.
- Bring your awareness to your breath.
- Allow your belly to rise as you breathe in and gently draw inward as you breathe out. Breathe in and out through your nose.
- Take long, smooth, deep breaths.
- Subtly slow down your breath and smooth out your respiration. Cultivate a deeply relaxed breathing pattern.
- Keep your awareness in your lower belly. Continue to pay attention to allowing your belly to expand on the inhalation, and draw slightly inward on the exhalation. Allow your belly to become softer and more relaxed.
- Next move your awareness through your body to assist all parts of yourself into a deeply relaxed state (feeling ease).
- Feel your hips, legs, and feet. Allow those parts of yourself to become more relaxed.
- Feel the alignment of your rib cage. Find your center.
- Feel the alignment of your spine from the base through the crown. Find the best alignment for your body in this moment. Feel for ease in your alignment.
- Feel your chest area. Gently lift your sternum and make room for your heart and your lungs. Allow your breath to expand from your belly, through your rib cage, and into your chest.
- Allow your shoulder blades to soften into your body.
- Feel your neck; let the sides of the neck soften and the back of the neck lengthen.
- Feel your face; soften your eye sockets, your forehead, your temples, and your jaw.
- Open up space inside. Make more room between the front and back of your body. Open up space between the vertebrae in your spine. Cultivate spaciousness.
- Notice places that are not ease. Feel for areas in your body that call your attention. Notice if there is pain anywhere or tension and stress held anywhere in your body (behind the eyes, the jaw, the neck, the hips, etc.). When you notice a place in your body that is not at ease, keep your awareness with that area as long as possible, ideally until it relaxes or feels more at ease. While you are observing, the tension (or feeling of dis-ease) it may shift to ease, just by your present awareness. Often, this shifting takes place fairly easily because when you are meditating in the deepest state of ease within you are accessing your energetic body. Energy needs only an observer to shift. While meditating in your body, the mind is the observer and the innate wisdom within you will take charge to bring you into ease (which is your natural state of being).
NOTE: It is sometimes difficult for the mind to stay present in areas of the body where there is discomfort from trauma or injury. This is because the function of the mind is to find a solution to the problem. But while we are cultivating ease (in the body meditation), it is essential to remind oneself that this is the time to be present; it is not the time for solving problems. While meditating, avoid thinking about solutions to problems (e.g., what you should try ...; what you could do for it....; etc.). Just stay with the area that is not ease, breathe into it, and use tool Number 2, Descriptive Words (describe to yourself how the area feels using adjectives like hot, sticky, sharp, and so on). It will change on its own from your presence.
Tool Number Two: Descriptive words
This tool is especially beneficial for chronically stressed areas or any area in the body where there is acute or chronic pain. It is not necessary to use this tool every time you meditate; use it only when it is needed.
Using descriptive words gives the body a way to communicate—a voice. You will witness your body responding to being heard, and miraculously, a process of healing is initiated. The body will clear out anything it doesn’t need after it is heard accurately. In other words, sandy, gritty, sticky, dense, or heavy stuff isn’t ease and the body wants to clear it. Being heard (giving the body a voice with words of description) and being acknowledged (mind staying present with the body) activates the innate wisdom within you to heal on all levels (mind, body, heart, and spirit.
- Once you are in a deeply relaxed state (at ease inside) go to the area that holds discomfort and use adjectives to describe how it feels.
- Use words like sandy, gritty, sticky, dense, hot, cold, soft, or warm but find the words that fit. When you get the words right the body responds and you will know.
- Stay with the area as you are describing what it feels like and observe. Your body will begin to clear what isn’t ease all on its own.
Tool Number Three: Mantra/affirmation
This tool is most useful when the mind is stuck on something. When you are thinking about something so intently that you cannot be present to your body try using affirmative words to help you let go. You can also use this when the tissues have difficulty relaxing completely. Some examples of affirmative words include: “I am,” “I am well,” “it is all perfect,” “I am spirit of divine source,” “I am love,” “life is joy and filled with love,” “I trust,” “I am always safe and divinely guided,” or anything you invent. Make an effort to become as relaxed as you can and then find words that the body responds to and observe yourself going deeper into ease. Through trying different words and/or phrases, you will begin to notice which ones the body responds to (you will notice feeling more relaxed when the words fit). Repeat the words as many times as you find beneficial. You may incorporate this tool every time you meditate or on occasions. Find what works for you.
Tool Number Four: Gentle seated movement
Gentle movement helps you become present to your body. This tool is extremely beneficial to release tension and stress held in the body and helps calm the nervous system and brings you into the present moment. Begin using this tool after keeping your awareness on your breath for at least a few minutes; allow yourself to become as relaxed as possible.
- With your eyes closed, gently fold forward (over one leg, or both legs, or over a pillow on your lap).
- Move very slowly and integrate your breath into your movement. The intention is to release stress and tension in the tissues of the body.
- Once you have come as far forward as is appropriate for you, tuck your chin into your throat and soften your face, neck, shoulders, back, and hips.
- Deepen your breath and keep letting go. Allow yourself to soften even more. Feel your muscles and all the tissues releasing.
- Be intuitive. Find the movement that allows you to move stagnant energy out of your body.
- When you are complete come back to the seated position; find your center; open up space inside; cultivate ease.
Additional notes on movement:
While in the meditation, there may be times where your body wants you to slightly adjust how you are sitting. This is fine. Trust yourself. For example you may need to move your ribs slightly forward or let your jaw lower allowing the head to move into a place of effortlessness at the top of the spine, etc. The intention is to feel for ease everywhere--in every tissue, muscle, bone, cell, and the spaces in between. The mind assists the body in going there. Feel it! Go deeper!
Your body will guide you with the presence of your mind. It is a mind-body partnership. It is the Divine partnership; the Divine masculine, the mind, and the Divine Feminine, the body. Trust your body to align itself appropriately; keep feeling for the deepest state of ease within yourself.
is appropriate to allow your body to readjust or realign as many times as is necessary during the practice. Find ease inside yourself. Meditate there! In this place there is only peace and the feeling you are filled up with, ease, is your authentic state aligned with your highest truth!
The law of attraction works with feeling. The feelings you hold inside yourself speak loudly to the unified field of consciousness. The unified field of consciousness reflects back to you, your inner-state of feeling and being. Practice being the peace you want to see in the world.