People often ask me what the difference is, between prayer and meditation.
Prayer and meditation are in fact quite different, yet also compliment each other. And I would advise you to practice both on a daily basis.
This quote by Yogi Bhajan is quite clear and I think, explains it very well:
“Prayer is when the mind is focused on one solo point and the individual praying talks to Infinity. Meditation is when the mind returns to a completely clear and receptive state and Infinity talks to the individual.”
When you pray, you tend to direct yourself to Inifinity or God (whichever God that might be), by talking to God or asking for things.
However, when you meditate, you quieten your mind in order to listen to infinity.
Praying can be practised fairly simply and naturally. But meditation requires more of a process and technique. For example, quietening your mind is not at all easy, and yogis begin by learning to quieten their bodies. As mind and body are profoundly connected, quietening the body has the same affect on the mind.
So if you want to meditate, sit comfortably with a straight back. Sit still. Don’t move a muscle.That physical process is the beginning of meditation.
Later you can add elements such as specific breathing patterns, mudras or mantras, in order to reach what yogis call a state of “neutral mind”, where your mind can truly meditate.
During this process, you will have many thoughts that come from your subconscious, which is why Yogi Bhajan referred to meditation as “the cleansing of the subconscious”. This is absolutely normal. Just let those thoughts go. And each time that you find yourself following one of your thoughts, use your strength to return to concentrating on your breathing or a mantra.
If you have never meditated before and want to give it a go, I recommend the meditation for Calming the Heart, which you can find at the end of Beginner’s Guide to Meditation.
Try it for 40 consecutive days. You will see for yourself, just how powerful meditation is.
And for sure you will notice how daily practice begins to change you little by little, in deep and positive way.
Gabrielle – Puranshant Kaur
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