Allow Yourself To Flow Without Trying To Control Everything How to Meditate: A Taoist Method for Grounding Yourself and for Healing!

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How to Meditate: A Taoist Method for Grounding Yourself and for Healing!

There are hundreds of ways to practice meditation, and the Taoist method is the simplest. Combining principles from both Hindu and Buddhist meditation, Taoist meditation – like philosophy – is straightforward and practical, without mystical mumbo-jumbo.

A core tenet of Taoist practice is harnessing internal energy and using it to promote health, healing and creativity.

The two main focuses of Taoist meditation are jing (stillness and calmness) and ding (focus and concentration.) Jing helps the meditator to focus inward and possibly distract from outside stimuli—with steady calm concentration, focusing on developing one— Pointed awareness, a singular and undisturbed state where one can allow the deeper workings of the mind to flow upward.

When you meditate, you’ll often find, especially when first starting out, that your brain will run against your will, trying to bring all sorts of disconnected thoughts and concepts into reality, preventing you from achieving real peace.

Taoist masters say that the “emotional mind,” tries to control your desires and ego and keep you from spiritual awareness. It’s natural—we spend all of our waking hours trying to control the world around us and our own actions, and it can be hard to let go.

If you feel your mind is restless and refuses to let you experience peace, there are things you can do to calm it down. First, focus on your breathing – focus on the flow of fresh air coming out of your nose and mouth.

As you breathe, you can focus on a specific part of your body—the area between your eyebrows, for example, a place known as the “third eye.” Or focus on the rise and fall of your naval (the classic “naval-gazing” technique) as you inhale and exhale.

Many find a mantra helpful. A mantra is a chant that harmonizes with the mind and helps focus energy. The most popular are “om” (pronounced “om”), “ah,” “hum,” and “ing.” You can focus your energy by hovering a deity or sacred symbol above your head, visualizing the positive energy within you – once you have calmed down, you can gently let the image float away and continue your meditation.

Taoist meditation addresses the “three treasures” – body, breath and mind. First, find a comfortable position to sit on the floor or in a chair. Make sure your spine is straight, your weight is evenly balanced, and you’re physically comfortable (if you’re cold, put on a sweater!) How you sit and meditate is entirely up to you.

Some people feel most comfortable in a half-lotus position with their legs crossed on the floor. Others feel more comfortable in a straight-backed chair with their feet firmly planted on the floor. There is no ‘right’ way – whatever feels best to you is the right way to meditate.

Now turn your attention to your breath. Be aware of your breath as it comes out of your nose and mouth. Be aware of the thoughts running through your mind. Let them come – don’t dwell on any one thing. Let them dissolve with your breath and let them pass out of your mind.

Don’t be alarmed if you find yourself experiencing moments of emptiness, when you think of nothing; This may be shocking at the moment, because we are not used to thinking about anything, but this is what we want to achieve. You want to reach a place of open, limitless awareness.

Remember to keep your hands in the most natural and comfortable position for you, with your palms on your knees or thighs, or in one of the traditional ‘mudra’ hand gestures – palms facing outwards, for example, or your middle finger touching your thumb.

The important thing is to be relaxed, comfortable and at ease, so that your mind can ignore the needs of your body and open itself up to further knowledge.

Meditation in a clinical setting has been proven to be extremely beneficial for the mind and body, contributing to your mental and physical health. Meditation keeps your brain wave patterns in an alpha state, a level of consciousness that promotes healing.

Deep breathing and a slow pulse rate reduce the workload on the heart, lower levels of the body’s stress chemicals cortisol and lactate-2, and reduce free radicals in the blood that cause cancer, tissue and blood vessel damage. Less stress increases skin elasticity and health, making you look and feel younger. And regular meditation lowers cholesterol levels – which means less chance of heart disease!

So take time to meditate. You’ll be glad you did.

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