What is Meditation?

What is Meditation?
I have been participating in the Chopra Center’s 21 Day Meditation Challenge with Deepak Chopra. This is not my first experience with him and I dare say it will not be my last.
The first go around the focus was on LOVE, love of self and love of others. I was sad when it was over because it had become an integral part of my day and I felt such peace & tranquility as a result of doing the practices. I certainly need to focus on what I learned during the challenge!
This time the focus is on ABUNDANCE. Each day we have a centering thought to focus upon. For example, Day 2’s thought is, “I create my personal abundance from an infinite source.”. The mantra for that day was Aham Brahmasmi (Sanskrit)
The core of my being is the ultimate reality, the root and ground of the universe, the source of all that exists.(English)


Deepak Defines Meditation – Everyone thinks that the purpose of meditation is to handle stress, to tune out, to get away from it all. While that’s partially true, the real purpose of meditation is actually to tune in, not to get away from it all, but to get in touch with it all. Not to just de-stress, but to find that peace within, the peace that spiritual traditions talk about that passes all understanding. So, meditation is a way to get in the space between your thoughts. You have a thought here, a thought here, and there’s little space between every thought.

According to wisdom traditions, this space between the thought is the window, is the corridor, is the vortex to the infinite mind – the mystery that some people call the spirit or God. We don’t have to use those terms, but it’s your core consciousness. And the more we learn about this space between thoughts, we find certain things to be true of it:

  • It’s a field of infinite possibilities – infinite possibilities, pure potentiality.
  • Everything is connected to everything else.
  • It’s a space of infinite creativity, infinite imagination.
  • It is a place where there is something called observer effect, or the power of intention, which means intention is very powerful when brought to this space and it orchestrates its own fulfillment – what people call the law of attraction – so those are wonderful qualities of your own spirit.

In meditation, we get into this space so we find ourselves infinite possibilities, infinite correlation, infinite creativity, infinite imagination, and infinite power of intention. That’s what meditation is really about. One of the benefits is how good you feel when you have finished.

Where to Meditate

If you are doing guided meditations, you can plug in, close your eyes, and go within in any safe place you choose where you will not be disturbed. Once you become accustomed to meditating, you can do it anywhere and I do mean anywhere. I have gone into meditation of public transportation. The people around me may think I am asleep, but I am fully aware fo my surroundings, while going deeper into myself. People have commented to me that there is a peace about me that they couldn’t put their finger on until they saw me meditate.

When to Meditate

Morning and evening coincide with our body’s quieter rhythms. Our body knows how to be still; we just have to give it opportunity. Studies show that routines begun in the morning last the longest, but any time you look forward to meditating is the right time. This goes along with the Ayurvedic medicinal philosophy of our body’s rhythms. My experience is that I need to be up for at least a half hour to an hour before I can meditate. Some people do it upon rising in the morning. I think it is important to discover your own bodies rhythms.

Body Position

Being comfortable is most important. It is preferable to sit up straight on the floor or on a chair to help cultivate alertness, but if you are ill or need to lie down, that is fine. The mind has been conditioned to sleep when the body is lying down so you may feel sleepier. Your hands can relax on your lap, palms up or any way that you feel most open.


Thoughts will inevitably drift in and dance around your mind, but that’s normal. Don’t try to do anything with them – let them be. If you find yourself thinking about what’s passing through your mind, just return to focusing your awareness on the mantra or your breath – you will soon slip into the space between thoughts. I have also been instructed by others who have been meditating for a long time that when thoughts occur we are to simply observe them & let them pass. Do not dwell on the thought or try to come to a resolution regarding the thought. Let it pass like a cloud in the sky.


When we pay attention to our breath, we are in the present moment. In an unforced, natural rhythm, allow your breath to flow in and out, easily and effortlessly. It is important to use proper breathing. For instance, does your diaphram fill with air or are you shallow breathing with your chest. It took me a little bit to remind myself to breath as babies do, with the diaphram.

Meditation Length

The effects of meditation are cumulative, and setting aside as little as 15 minutes a day to retreat and rejuvenate is beneficial. Many schools of meditation prescribe 30 minutes of meditation twice a day, and as your meditation practice evolves, you can extend your time. It’s better to spend just a few minutes meditating every day rather than meditating for an hour a week. I have found that once I get into a deep meditation I am loathe for it to end! It feels so good to sit in nothingness sometimes, especially when you have a busy, hectic life.

The Five Things That Can Happen During Meditation

During meditation, five things can happen:

  1. We can experience thoughts.
  2. We can mentally repeat the mantra.
  3. We can have thoughts and repeat the mantra at the same time. If this happens to you, place greater attention on the mantra.
  4. Our thoughts and the mantra can cancel each other out, and we can slip into that place of stillness between our thoughts, the “gap.”
  5. We can fall asleep. If you fall asleep, when you awaken and if time permits, allow yourself about five or ten minutes to complete your meditation.

Sources: Me and http://www.chopra.com/meditationtips#whatis

7 Intuitive Mind Exercises to Crank Up Your Creativity


When you create the intention to be more intuitive you automatically become more creative.

Intuition is defined as information that spontaneously appears in our awareness without any conscious effort on our part.

Both intuition and creative inspiration occur beneath the level of our conscious awareness. Intuition cannot “willed” in the mind nor can creativity. They arise spontaneously when you let go and allow your mind to search the subconscious and collective unconscious for the solutions you seek.

I say that intuition and creative inspiration arise spontaneously because both come to you outside of the rational, sequential thinking process. In other words they are not part of the logical “linear” thinking process that says, “If I do A then B is sure to follow and after that C.” Intuition comes to mind exactly as Jonas Salk, inventor of the polio vaccine describes it in this quote:

“It is always with excitement that I wake up in the morning wondering what my Intuition will toss up to me, like gifts from the sea. I work with it and rely on it. It’s my partner.” —Jonas Salk

The intuitive flash of inspiration and creative idea is thrown forth onto the shores of our consciousness whole and fully formed without the thinking mind’s involvement. This is why intuition and creative inspiration often feel like an “aha” moment.

When you decide to develop your intuition you will automatically find that you become more creative because the intuitive process also imparts creative ideas and solutions. Ideas that inspire you creatively will come to you constantly because you cannot be creative unless you are intuitive and you cannot be intuitive without also being creative. The two are intertwined.

To use your mind more creatively try these intuitive mind exercises:

Stop or go?

Here’s a simple creative exercise you can do to get a yes or no answer to a question.

Close your eyes and take a few deep relaxing breaths. When you feel calm and centered ask yourself a question in a manner so that you will have to get a yes or no answer. For example your question could be: Should I buy this house? Is it time to look for a new job? Is marrying Don a good idea?

Then picture yourself driving in your car toward an intersection where a policeman is directing traffic.

There is one car up ahead of you going through the intersection as you make your way toward it. Now ask yourself the question the way you have worded it to get a yes or no answer. As you approach the intersection notice if the police officer is waving you through the intersection or telling you to stop. That is your answer. Trust it!

Use the calendar

Do you want to choose the right time to proceed with a project or some undertaking? Close your eyes take a few relaxing breaths. When you are ready envision that you are walking into a room in your home with a large monthly calendar hanging on the wall. As you get close enough to read it notice what year and month it is on. Then notice if a particular day stands out more than any other. That is your answer. Trust it.

Use the clock

Not sure what time is best to make a phone call to someone or pay a visit somewhere? Close your eyes take a few relaxing breaths. When you are ready envision that you are walking through your house to your bedroom to look at the clock on your bedside table. When you walk in you see it. The time on the clock is the answer you seek. Trust it.

Seeking inspiration and guidance?

Would you like an animal symbol to inspire or guide you in the right direction? Close your eyes take a few relaxing breaths. When you are ready envision that you are walking through a beautiful forest. You see the trees stretched out before you and hear the crunch of leaves as you walk toward a sun filled clearing. As you enter the clearing you notice an ____________ at the edge of the clearing.

What animal did you see? Was it tame, did it come to you? Or, was it wild? Animals make wonderful symbols because each species has “traits” you can easily analyze to apply to the situation in which you are looking for an answer. To understand the meaning of the animal you can “Google” it for more information.

Open a book to a phrase

Do you need a direct answer? Close your eyes take a few relaxing breaths. When you are ready envision that you are walking through a large library. You walk past shelf after shelf of books. Finally you come to a shelf and one particular book that you are drawn to. You pluck it from the shelf and open up. On the page is a word or phrase. This is the answer you’ve been looking for. Trust it.

Complete this sentence

Complete this sentence…if money were of no concern I’d do… Or if I wasn’t afraid of upsetting so and so I’d do… Or, if I knew I couldn’t fail I’d undertake…….

Don’t think about it – just answer the questions. When you remove the “shoulds” meaning “what you think you should do or what is possible” your answers will come straight from you’re the heart of your intuition and guide you to what you truly wish for and want to do in your life. Removing the “shoulds” opens the door to your creativity.

Wondering who to partner with in your life?

Are you unsure about who to work with on a new venture, or what job to take, or who to trust with something? Close your eyes take a few relaxing breaths. When you are ready envision that you are walking up the stairs toward the entrance of a house or building. You have an important meeting at this location with a person or the people that will become important in your life. You ring the bell or use the knocker.

The door opens. Who is standing there? You are shown inside – who is there? The person answering the door and the people inside at this meeting are the ones you belong with. This is the answer. Trust it.

Use these exercises to stimulate your mind to think more creatively. The more often you use them the more you will become a consistent “idea machine” generating creative ideas spontaneously day after day.

Angela’s Bio:

Angela Artemis, an intuition coach, is on a mission to teach readers around the world to “speak intuition” so that they unlock all the brilliant potential that resides within. She blogs at www.PoweredbyIntuition.com and is an Amazon best-selling author. Readers are welcomed to download free bonus materials here.

Words Are Powerful

Language is a powerful tool for directing and manifesting energy into form. We can change our lives in a matter of moments by changing our thoughts and the words we speak. Our words are powerful, so powerful that they create our reality. We are creating our future as we speak it! God created the Universe first through a thought and then with the spoken word, “Let there be Light”.  Our internal dialogue has an enormous effect on every aspect of our lives. Consider everything you think and say to be a prayer. Our words are powerful especially when we speak with very strong emotion. We literally speak things into being. Our words can be used to build or destroy, for light or dark purposes, to build someone up or tear them down. The words we speak and hear shape our lives. It is very important for us to become aware of how we are speaking. The universe always follows our command regardless if it is negative or positive. If you are struggling with negative thoughts and feelings, words and affirmations are a great way to reprogram yourself. We are very powerful creators and speaking things into being with strong emotion brings them into manifestation much quicker. In order to ensure the effectiveness of the affirmations focus your energy on your heart and repeat them with attention, conviction and strong desire.

Stating “I Am” before every statement is a very powerful command.

I AM a conscious Creator.I AM one with God and all beings.I AM one with the Light.I AM a divine spark of God.I AM beautiful.I AM magnificent.I AM eternal.I AM full of courage.I AM abundant.I AM grateful.I AM aware of my thoughts, words, feelings and emotions.I AM a high vibrational being.I AM made from love, therefore I AM love.

Every morning before you get out of bed use words (with emotion) to affirm your intention for the day:

“My day flows with ease and grace”

“I Am grounded, balanced, kind, peaceful and joyful”

“I ask for my highest good to always be served.”

“I exude peace, love, joy and compassion everywhere I go.”

“All of my work is done with appreciation and gratitude”

“Infinite intelligence leads and guides me in all my ways”

Become aware of your words. When you recognize you have stated something negative immediately say something positive to counteract your negative creation.        

  • “The word is a FORCE; it is the POWER you have to express and communicate, to think and thereby create the events in your life.”
  • Don Miguel Ruiz
  • “Life is a game of boomerangs. Our thoughts, deeds and words return to us sooner or later with astounding accuracy.”  Florence Shinn
  • “In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God and the word was God.”  John 1:1
  • “Words are alive, cut them and they bleed.”  Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • “Whatever words we utter should be chosen with care, for people will hear them and be influenced by them for good or evil.”  Buddha
  • “Death and life are in the power of the tongue.” Proverbs 18:21

Spiritual Evolution: Three Steps to Raising Consciousness from the Mental to the Spiritual

by Teri Goetz

Defining consciousness can be pretty elusive. However, I commonly define consciousness as who we think we are – given all the experiences, thoughts, and observations we have acquired until now. How else could we explain our awareness but with a frame of reference, namely, what we have been exposed to.  Consciousness is the awareness of self by the mind.  It is also the awareness of the world as we know it, and includes the idea of intuition.

All of this is subjective, of course. Meaning, we interpret what we see through our experiences, thoughts and observations. These are the lenses through which we decide whether or not to pay attention to something, whether something is “good” or “bad”, “safe” or “dangerous”. These are tools of the brain that evolution has given us to keep us alive.  We learn quickly to sort and categorize experiences in order to make sense of them. As we get older, we have more and more experience, have been exposed to more, and therefore, our consciousness is expanded.

But what does that mean?

These experiences have also brought a fair amount of baggage along with them. For example we often make assumptions that because something happened in the past, it will happen again. This helps if we are in the wild and assessing a potential predator or threat. However, this instinct-based skill hinders our ability to see the world in a more positive, beautiful and unlimited way: the way of spirit.

I believe there are three components to raising consciousness from a mental level to the level of spirit. In order of magnitude, they are: awareness, understanding and knowing – and I do not mean just by the brain. The brain is the tool (the lens and filter) to make sense of it all, to describe it to our world.

However, there is an inner knowing which is the divine that defies the brain’s ability to explain.  That is where real knowing resides…knowing we are the divine source of all the awareness and understandingKnowing we are the source of all. And when we get there, it’s like lying on the most comfortable bed, with the finest linens and the most heavenly pillows after a very long journey. We simply sink into the release and knowing that we are spirit.

In a somewhat mechanistic view of consciousness, I feel we must find a place for spirit to participate in consciousness-raising, and it is through these three components that we can do this.  The first two, awareness and understanding, are the building blocks to knowing, which first comes through higher and more evolved experience, and then from deep inside our truest selves.

The more we expose ourselves to things that will help us to grow in awareness, the wider our breadth and reach of information and understanding to draw on. For example, becoming cognizant that our thoughts create the way we feel, and the way we feel makes us act a certain way, is a highly conscious awareness. Applying that awareness creates an understanding of why we behave in a particular way.

Therefore, changing the way we think changes the way we feel, and therefore, our behavior. Our lives can change, simply by understanding the fact that once we are aware of our thoughts, we can use our consciousness to reframe them to live in a more successful and fulfilled way.

As we become more versed in moving our awareness into a less limited, more spirit based understanding, we move into knowing.  At first, knowing comes from being tuned in to (or conscious of) the first two building blocks.  As we become more adept at these skills, they feel like second nature. They are acted on without consciously focusing on them. THAT is part of knowing.

Taking it further, we learn that our intuition, our “divine knowing,” has something to say! When we get quiet and less trapped in the noise of our minds, for example in meditation, spirit gives us a deeper grasp of life beyond the mind. The more we tap into spirit, the more we find mastery over the mind, and therefore, expand our consciousness to include the divine.
Spend 15 minutes a day, repeating and meditating on the following affirmation. Feel free to journal about it, as well, for a higher consciousness understanding. By really contemplating the nature of spirit through awareness, learning and knowing, we begin to see how it permeates our lives in every way, that we are the creator of the thought, the emotion, the action. We are source and substance. And lie down in the comfort of that knowing.

“I elevate my thoughts to become aware of all experience as spirit. I learn I am the source (creator) of substance (thoughts). I know spirit is both the creator of the thought, and the substance that flows from the thought, the action. I know I am spirit.”