How to practice meditation or concentration exercises?

Discussion in 'Mental Discipline & Meditation' started by JonhOliver, 24 July 2018.

  1. JonhOliver

    JonhOliver Member

    I would like to know what some of the people in here do to sharpen their mind, and possibly try to reach higher stages of consciousness. It doesn't have to necessarily be some religious form of meditation, although i am interested in Buddhism from reading the doctrine of awakening, but it can be something else as long as it serves more or less the same purpose. My problem is that most books written by traditionalists don't really deal with the more strictly practical aspect of meditation, and i don't want to be misled by some new age books.
    Also, out of curiosity, could you guys share any experiences or results that you've felt from meditation?
  2. Airyanem Vaejah

    Airyanem Vaejah Junior Member

    Meditation is a must. Even a concentrated prayer serves that purpose. But if you specifically want meditation from a Buddhist perspective, then I can recommend a meditation guide by Khentrul Rinpoché of Jonangpa lineage of Vajrayana.

    Results should lead to samadhi and eventually to liberation. Meditation is the preparation of mind for the self-knowledge. Every tradition has some form of it, so it depends which path you'll take (or are on already).
    Last edited: 8 August 2018
  3. JonhOliver

    JonhOliver Member

    I have some interest in Buddhism, since it's a traditional path that's still alive in some monastery's.. Although, i would also like to get into hermetism, despite the fact that their practices aren't really well known.
    For now i've been doing mantra meditation based on this video.

    Just this morning, i had a very surreal experience. It only lasted a few seconds, but it felt very real and strange. It was like in a science fiction movie in those scenes where the spacecrafts are moving trough the black space into a star, whose appearance is like a white dot. I saw something along those lines, and even though it's most likely just my imagination it felt like something real. Have you ever experience something like this?
  4. Airyanem Vaejah

    Airyanem Vaejah Junior Member

    I believe that hermetism is largerly a waste of time nowadays. The tradition was broken and today it is full of fake masters and pseudo-initiatic orders. You can still study the concepts of course, but for the practice itself, I would choose one of the unbroken spiritual paths.

    Japa meditation (mantra meditation) is very important in Advaita Vedanta, as a preparation of the mind to receive the self-knowledge under the guidance of a guru. Technically speaking it's quite similar to dhikr or hesychasm. Here's a good explanation from a traditional advaitin teacher:

    It depends which path you'll take, like I wrote before. The guide by Khentrul Rinpoche is well worth reading. I should still have it somewhere in PDF. Send me your e-mail in a private message and I will send it to you if you wish.

    Yes, your experience sounds familiar, but especially in the beginning these experiences vary considerably with each meditator. Buddhism has a very advanced meditation practice, you can't go wrong there, but after a certain point you would have to become a Buddhist to continue with this practice, so choose carefully.
  5. JonhOliver

    JonhOliver Member

    Another doubt that i have is this. When i'm meditating should i try to have my mind blank, or should i try to "imagine" or "visualize the mantra that i'm saying or my breath, depending on the type of meditation i'm doing.
    For example when i'm focusing on my breath should i visualize it going trough my body, as if it was some kind of substance for example, or should i keep my mind completely blank and just breath in a rhythmic and repeated manner?
  6. InternetDarkAge

    InternetDarkAge Junior Member

    I would read directly from the Pali scriptures themselves, which expand upon techniques like mindfulness in greater detail. Asceticism is an integral technique in itself, and defines each successive stage of elevation. So if you are wanting your meditation to reflect higher states, it will, perhaps, be impossible to do so without applying degrees of asceticism. Otherwise, the "higher" states you experience will be tinged with so much attachment of personality that you run a very real and likely danger of mistaking a "higher" state for what is in reality a lower state. This is very dangerous.
    Here I commend the traditionalists (Rene Guenon in particular) for their emphasis on the dangers of spiritual development. It is not for everyone. You run a real danger of harming yourself, perhaps irreparably, if you do not proceed with a high measure of caution and prudence. One of the greatest harms of the New Age movement has been to completely disregard the dangers, and merely emphasize its benefits, like the snake oil salesmen that they are, as if spiritual development were just another form of colon cleanse.
    (above is a sutra on in and out breathing, which I use as an example for the kind of technical advice that the sutras have to offer)
    These are translations, of course, so always keep in mind that you're reading an interpretation.
    Last edited: 14 August 2018
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  7. JonhOliver

    JonhOliver Member

    Thanks for posting the link InternetDarkAge , i will most likely order the pali canon of the internet, or go to my local library to see if i can find them( it´s a library in a small city, but surprisingly it has evola, guenon, spengler, all of Plato, among others) The texts and similes in these texts seem really beautiful, at least from what evola quoted in Doctrine of Awakening.
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  8. Airyanem Vaejah

    Airyanem Vaejah Junior Member

    I wholeheartedly agree with this. These dangers are very real. That's why I think that a monitoring by an authentic path is absolutely necessary. Syncretic mish-mash is more likely to bring one into the sphere of influence of counter-initiatic forces, than to bring him closer to the Truth. And without the guidance of a true spiritual master, one will have a very hard time to discriminate between the various spiritual states and can easily start to fool himself.
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  9. JonhOliver

    JonhOliver Member

    The biggest problem is where can one find a true spiritual master in the modern west. There are almost no true esoteric organizations left, leaving us as the only option reading books and talking trough the internet.
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  10. Manu

    Manu Señor Member Sustaining Member
    1. Norden
    2. Knights of the Iron Cross

    The upside is that all options are open, but as InternetDarkAge says, the risks are very real. There are endless possibilities to take wrong turns, as it were. Many turns, however, are also good, beneficial, right and so forth. I am sometimes amused by how alike these things are to physical training. There are always a ton of ideas about any given subject, for example how to lift a weight. Some are beneficial to varying degrees, and some are detrimental. It is profoundly important to critically examine ideas and methods with all senses. Particularly logically through facts, but also emotionally and intuitively.
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