Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #1

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BREATH MEDITATION TEXT:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the spine straight, the eyes closed and a relaxed smile. Quieten the mind and heart. Observe your body in stillness, without judging or anticipating, simply be present in the moment. Enjoy this moment of physical, emotional and mental stillness.Now turn your attention to your breath. Breathe naturally, inhale and exhale slowly and smoothly. Perceive the contact of the air as it enters the nostrils. As you inhale, let the abdomen expand and as you exhale lightly pull the abdomen inward. Notice a brief hiatus between the inhalation and exhalation. This brief moment is almost imperceptible, but you, as a persistent observer, pay attention to this gap between the inhalation and exhalation. Don’t hold your breathe and avoid interfering with your natural respiratory rhythm. Breathe as naturally as possible. Simply observe the cadence of your breath. Continue to breathe slowly and smoothly. Focus your awareness closely observing the sensations during the inhalation, the brief hiatus, and the exhalation. Focus…. and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #3

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CANDLE FLAME INSIDE THE HEART MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the spine straight, your eyes closed and a relaxed smile. Feel a state of warm serenity. In this moment of stillness, turn your perception to the chest, identifying the cardiac muscle.

Your awareness permeates this region, strive to identify the pulse of the heart, its shape, volume and density.

Now, as your awareness converges in this region of the chest, mold your thought to the shape of a candle’s flame, its form and movement. Notice the luminous element of fire. In turn, the space where you are, the external sounds and the other parts of the body become opaque and distant. You are surrounded by a very pleasant and protective veil. The heart is softly lit by the flame, giving it a reddish silhouette and emanating pleasant warmth.

Concentrate intensely. Contemplate the image of the candle’s flame until the mental waves take its shape. Focus and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #4

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PURPLE FLAME IN THE HEART MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the spine straight, the eyes closed and a relaxed smile. Experience a state of warm serenity.

In this moment of stillness, bring your awareness to the left side of your chest, locate the cardiac muscle and follow your heart beat. As you enter the heart, it transforms into a cave where you notice a very soft glow coming from its depths. Walk in the direction of this light, perceive the texture of the walls, the thin bed of sand on the floor and the reigning silence. As you arrive to the source of luminosity in the cave, you see a violet colored flame shining brightly and flickering. Your eyes contemplate this violet flame.

Now place the violet flame into your heart and allow the luminosity to fill your heart and chest. The mind settles, and adopts the form and qualities of this image. Observe with pleasure. Focus and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #5

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GOLDEN FLAME IN THE HEART MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the spine straight, the eyes closed and, with a light smile in the expression, feel a state of warm serenity. In this moment of stillness, direct the flow of your thoughts to your chest, in the region of the cardiac muscle.

Wherever you direct your attention, a significant increase in blood flow follows. Observe a subtle increase in temperature in the region of your chest. Perceive the pleasant warmth.

As your awareness converges in the chest, mold your thought to the shape of a candle’s golden flame resting inside your heart. Notice its shape, its movement and its luminosity. Feel the warmth in your chest emanating from the flame.

Sustain your concentration on the golden flame. Allow this image to saturate your thought. If at any moment your thought deviates, simply let the unrelated thought pass, without criticism or frustration, and return your attention to the image of the golden flame. Focus and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #6

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SO-HAM MEDITATION:

(starts with inhalation)

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the spine straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression. Now focus on your breath, without interfering or modifying it. Identify the touch and temperature of the air passing through the airways, and the almost imperceptible movement of the lungs.

Focus your attention on the sound of the breath: when inhaling, mentally vocalize the SO sound; when exhaling, mentally vocalize the HAM sound.

When inhaling, the air gently enters through the nostrils and reverberates the syllable SO through the brain.

Listen to the sounds of your breath ... When you exhale, the sound HAM reverberates through the brain.

Without interfering with the breath, continue to breathe in and mentally vocalize the sound SO, exhale mentally vocalizing the sound HAM... SO... HAM… Focus and Meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #7

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FULL MOON MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the spine straight and the eyes closed. Gently perceive how the silence and stability brings a subtle smile to your expression. Enjoy this moment.

Now, imagine yourself sitting on a soft lawn at night. The temperature is pleasant, and the silence is broken only by the crickets. Above you the starry sky opens. The moonlight catches your eye.

A shining beautiful full moon spills its silver light over your body and the surrounding nature. Fascinated, your gaze focuses on the perfect circular shape of the moon.

The mind settles on the full moon. Focus and Meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #8

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CRESCENT MOON MEDITATION:

Sit comfortably and still, with your hands resting on your legs. With your eyes closed, and your back straight.

Gently perceive how the silence and stability brings a subtle smile to your expression. Enjoy this moment.

Cease the flow of thoughts. Focus all of your attention in the area between the eyebrows. Concentrate.

Remember, where the thoughts converge more blood will flow. Therefore, it’s quite natural if you notice a subtle increase in temperature and a slight tingle between the eyebrows.

The perception of external noises and the rest of your body disappear. All that remains is the area between your eyebrows, where now a beautiful crescent moon shines, bright and silverish. Imagine the contours of this astro in vivid detail above the landscape.

The crescent moon acquires an intense and bright silver color.

Let your thoughts be absorbed by the image of this crescent moon. Focus and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #9

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SUNSET MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression.

Still the body, mind and heart. Observe your body in stillness, without judging or anticipating, simply be present and enjoy this moment.

Now imagine yourself sitting comfortably in a large open field and notice the soft grass beneath you.

Around you, the trees reflect luminous orange sunlight off their leaves as the almighty sun slowly sets over the horizon.

The twilight sky unfolds into a rainbow of orange and blue colors.

An amazing silence permeates the landscape. Observe how nature respectfully says goodbye to the day and watches the sun disappear. Everything is still. Concentrate on the setting sun. Focus… and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #10

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SUNRISE MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and stable position, with the eyes closed, the back straight, and a light, almost imperceptible, smile. Still the body, mind and heart. Observe your body in stillness, without judging or anticipating, simply be present and enjoy this moment.

Imagine yourself sitting comfortably on the soft and warm sand along a small beautiful shoreline. Behind you lies a lush green forest with large palm trees, the breeze carries nature’s pleasurable perfume. The trees behind you sway in the gentle breeze and the pleasant sounds of rustling leaves reach your ears.

The sea stretches out before you. Small waves rise and fall softly over the sand.

To make this atmosphere of incomparable beauty and intimacy complete, the sun rises over the horizon in front of you, projecting its first rays of sunlight piercing the sky above the ocean.

Observe the beams of light progressively warming and illuminating your body and the landscape around you, flooding the entire panorama with a reddish hue.

Concentrate on the rising sun …  Focus and meditate…

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #11

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SUN MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression.

Quieten the body, mind and heart. Without judging or anticipating, simply be present and enjoy this moment.

In this moment of profound stillness, envision the image of the sun. It is fixed, luminous and radiant in the space between your eyebrows. Focus on the image.

At first your attention may deviate from the image to unrelated thoughts, and from these unrelated thoughts back to the image of the radiant sun. By insisting on the meditation, the mind will eventually follow the orders and thought will eventually take the shape of the sun.

Imagine it emitting intense bright light. Give your full attention to this vivid image of the golden, bright sun, and settle into the great silence that envelops you. Focus and meditate...

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #12

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LOTUS FLOWER MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression.

Quiet the body, mind and emotions. Observe your body in stillness, without judging or anticipating, simply be present and enjoy this moment.

Follow the continuous movement of your thoughts. Slowly move away from the randomness of these thoughts and imagine a blank canvas in front of you.

Mentally project the image of a lotus flower in full bloom onto your canvas. Use your creativity to carefully outline its shape, constructing the body of the flower in great detail.

The lotus flower becomes more clear and vivid.

Now visualize each of its petals, immaculately white and velvety. The petals acquire a translucent quality. Notice the texture of the flower and its beauty. Preserve the image of the lotus flower, until the mind settles. Focus and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #13

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RIVER MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression.  Quieten the body, mind and emotions. Observe yourself in stillness, be present in this moment. Consider the positive impact of your daily practice up to this point.

In this state of stillness, transport yourself to a beautiful riverside along the foothills of towering mountains, as the afternoon sun begins to set. A reddish-orange light bathes the landscape around you.

You can hear the sounds of nature and the wildlife preparing for the night. Before you lies a majestic river, flowing from the mountain. Feel the strength of the river’s currents. Your mind settles on this landscape and the river. Focus and meditate…

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #14

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WATERFALL MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression.  Quieten the body, mind and heart. Observe your body in stillness, simply be present and enjoy this moment.

In this stillness, transport yourself to a beautiful landscape with lake and large waterfall. Imagine yourself sitting atop a large slab of stone covered with moss near the base of the waterfall.

The immense waterfall rises above you vertically. The volume of water is immense, striking the surface of the lake with great impact, producing a large cloud of suspended water droplets that delicately dampen your skin.

You are surrounded by water and lush trees. The light of the morning sun softly glistens across the water, stones and shrubs.

Your consciousness progressively expands to encompass the entire landscape, including each leaf of each shrub, the small droplets, the rocky cliffs, the contours of the tree trunks, the volume and the strength of the magnificent waterfall. Concentrate on the waterfall…  focus and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #15

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PEBBLE IN A LAKE MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression.

Imagine yourself sitting on the shore of a lake. The water is deep and crystal clear. It is completely silent. The Autumnal sun gently illuminates the landscape around you. From the shore a pebble is thrown towards the centre of the lake. It rises and rises, until it reaches the highest point of its flight. Then it begins its steep descent toward the surface of the lake. Follow the pebble's course.

Observe as the pebble meets the surface of the crystalline water.

As it enters the water the reflection shakes, generating soft ripples. Watch for a moment the gentle movement created by the pebble. Notice the qualities of the water. Meanwhile, the pebble continues down, delving deeper and deeper into the lake, until it settles on the bottom.

Rest your focus on the image of the little pebble at the bottom of the lake. Your interest is drawn to the figure of this pebble.

All around everything is still. Stabilize all of your awareness on this image, until the mental waves cease. Focus and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #16

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DIAMOND MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression. The body is comfortable and the mind serene.

Now distance your consciousness from mental distractions, settling the mind on the form of a roughly shaped diamond embedded in the space between your eyebrows. Begin to sculpt a beautiful shape from this precious stone, directing your full focus to give a more sophisticated form to the rough diamond.

The image is so vivid that you can feel the touch of the luminous object between the eyebrows. Still your consciousness on the image. Focus and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #17

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HIMALAYAS MEDITATION

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression. The body is in a state of physical and mental comfort. Begin this meditation training by simply observing the mind’s continuous and uninterrupted flow of ideas.

Reduce interferences of thought. With this still consciousness, mentally trace the image of the Himalaya mountain range and their eternal snow covered peaks. The dark blue crags contrast with the larger, lighter blue mountains. A dense forest covers the lower regions. The afternoon sun gently illuminates the landscape, giving it a golden coloration. The silence is only broken by the singing of birds echoing among the mountains. Let your consciousness gently touch this bucolic image. Focus and meditate…

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #18

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VOLCANO MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression. Quieten the body, mind and emotions. Remember, where the thoughts converge more blood will flow. Bring your attention to the base of your spine and feel warmth in this region.

Begin to imagine volcanic activity at the base of your spine. Now lift the hot lava upwards through the spine. Feel the sensation of the lava’s heat reaching thousands of degrees and envision intense brightness in the perineum.

Follow the sensations of the molten rock flowing up from the base of the spine to the head. Focus and meditate…

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #19

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HAM-SA MEDITATION:

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression. Quieten the body, mind and emotions.

Follow the flow of your thoughts in your mind as if you were watching a movie. Let them come and go. Contemplate them and notice that you are not your thoughts or mind. Begin to settle your thoughts on your breath. Focus on the inhalation and exhalation, without interfering with your breath. The respiratory movement should become almost imperceptible. Concentrate.

Now, add sounds to the delicate rhythm of your breath: when you exhale, mentalize the syllable HAM, and, as you inhale mentalize the syllable SA. HAM, while exhaling, and SA while inhaling.

Stabilize your consciousness on the sounds: HAM ... SA ... HAM ... SA …HAM ... SA ...  focus and meditate.

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #20

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JAPA ÔM MEDITATION:

Use the recording as a reference and recreate the sound with your own thought in perfect synchrony with the recording. Mold your thought to the object of your meditation. If your thought eventually wanders, recognize thoughts and induce them to taking the form of the object of meditation. You are the observer, who is performing the act of observation on an object being observed. Meditation is when you experience all three of these pieces become one. Inject yourself into the object of your meditation. Focus and meditate…

Meditation Challenge // Level One - Day #21

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FINAL MEDITATION:

Remember, the goal of this challenge is to discover a meditation practice that is most effective for you and that will be incorporated into your daily routine.

Today’s you’re going to reflect on the meditation practices we’ve covered in this challenge and choose the one you’ve enjoyed the most so far, training for 20 minutes. Once you identify which images or sounds are easier for you, stick with them for a longer period of time to deepen your practice and eventually opens the gates to meditation or deep focus with any object, sound or activity.

Sit in a comfortable and firm position, with the back straight, the eyes closed and a light smile in the expression. Quiet the body, mind and emotions

Follow the continuous movement of your thoughts. Slowly move away from the randomness of these thoughts and imagine a blank canvas in front of you.

Mold your thought to the image or sound of your choice. Focus and meditate...