Tuesday, March 13, 2007

5 lines, 5 foci: a Meditation to bring peace and smarts


Sit in a comfortable way, in a chair with some firmness to it, or a log, or a stool, and sit to the forward edge.

1. Begin to follow your breathing and count to ten, one count for each breath. If your attention wanders start over and one and keep counting your breaths. If you reach ten, start over at one.

2. As you do this sense your five lines. (To sense means to pay attention to the inner feeling of ourselves, the shape and length and warmth and relationship to the rest of us. For example: sense your right hand, would mean to put awareness on the inside of your right hand. To switch to sensing your left hand, you put attention in the left hand.) The five lines are our two arms and our two legs and our spine/ head/ pelvis. Now the meditation is up to two sets of awareness: sensing our five lines and counting our breathing from one to ten.

3. Now add on a slight shifting of your spine, like this: as you breathe in, let your belly come forward, fill it with air, and let your head and chest come up just a little as you rock a bit forward on your pelvis. Don't panic if this isn't immediately obvious, just play around, with getting a little arch in your back, a little air in your belly and a little tilt up in your rear end and a slight raising of the sternum and chin. Just a little . And keep counting the breathing and sensing the five lines.

Three is a split movement, because on breathing out, you slump a little forward, rock back a bit on your pelvis, let your chin come down, and your belly come back as your back comes back. You let your air out and fold and curve forward. So, each in and out breath find you in a different shape as you massage your spine and ease and clarify your mind.

4. Now, getting a bit more fancy, as you breathe in and raise your chin a bit and arch your back and let your belly come forward, let your eyes open.

And as you fold and slump forward, and let your back round and your head and pelvis come toward each other in the front, let your eyes close. And keep up awareness of the five lines and the counting of your breathing.

5). Now, for the final touch: as you breathe in and arch and lift your head a bit and open your eyes, let your hands open just a bit.

And as you fold in and breathe out and bring your belly softly back and your back to the back and your chin down, and front of your pelvis rotating toward your face, let your hands close a little.

So you are

Counting your breathing to ten.

Sensing your arms and legs and spine.

Arching and folding with the breath.

Opening and closing your eyes with the breath.

Opening and closing your hands with the breath.

This is a lot.
It won't come instantly, but the benefits in stress reduction and increasing of focus and attention with be huge.

How much to do this?
Five minutes to twenty. Whatever you enjoy.
How often: once to three or four times a day if you do it in little doses.


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