Showing posts with label Vipassana. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Vipassana. Show all posts

What Is Analytical Meditation?




    Analytical meditation is a more structured and organized method of thinking about something, a topic or subject of concern or choice. 


    • You choose a subject with care and study it methodically with a calm, clear, and concentrated mind. 
    • In reality, to qualify as analytical "meditation," the thought and contemplation should take place in a condition that corresponds to Stage Four(Continuous attention without distractions), with the selected topic of analysis never completely disappearing from attention. 
    • Your mind will wander off on tangents if you don't have the steadiness of Stage Four. 
    • Maintaining a constant awareness of your breath in the background is an effective technique to keep your focus stable. 


    ANALYTICAL MEDITATION TOPICS. 


    Analytical meditation topics are divided into three groups:


    • The first are teachings, beliefs, or other concepts you want to learn more about. 
    • The second category includes issues that need to be resolved or choices that must be made. 
    • Last but not least, there are events, ideas, or realizations that seem to lead to a significant understanding. 


    Traditional scriptural texts, formal doctrines like Dependent Arising or the Four Noble Truths, or particular ideas like no-Self or emptiness may all be found in the first group. 

    However, there are many additional options:

    • You might be thinking about a friend's or teacher's remarks, a piece you've read, a poetry, a current occurrence, or even a scientific hypothesis. 
    • Personal issues, as well as issues relating to relationships, family, and job and professional life, may become the focus of analytical meditation. 
    • You may have commonplace insights into how previous experiences have conditioned you or those around you; your own or another's conduct; emotional dynamics; group behavior; or how the world operates. 
    • Solutions to issues and other helpful ideas emerge naturally in the relative quiet of meditation—especially in Stage Four—and are all suitable objects for analytical meditation. 


    Here I Cover 2 Approaches to Analytical Meditation


    1. Solving Problems And Gaining Insights

    2. The Formal Approach


    Rather of allowing them to disrupt your amatha-vipassan practice, schedule a session of formal analytical meditation to explore them further. 

    While supra-mundane Insight cannot be attained via analytical meditations, you may reflect on previous Insights and Experiences, which is beneficial for deepening and solidifying such Insights.




    You may also like to read more about Meditation, Guided Meditation, Mindfulness Mediation and Healing here.




    Analytical Meditation Technique - Solving Problems And Gaining Insights



      Preparation, incubation, solution, and verification are the four phases of issue solving:


      1. PREPARATION


        • When we prepare to solve an issue, we pay attention to the ideas and facts that are important to a solution while ignoring everything else. 
        • Selective encoding is the term used by psychologists to describe the cognitive process of separating what is significant from what is not. 

      2. INCUBATION


        • The issue is addressed in the following step, incubation. 
        • During the incubation stage, we mix and recombine all pertinent data, looking for a solution among the new combinations. 
        • This method of trial and error is known as selective combination. 


      We also compare the current issue and its solutions to comparable situations in the past and their actual solutions. 

      This selective comparison assists us in evaluating the options we currently have and offers us with new options. 

      These actions take place both subconsciously and deliberately. 


      When deliberately combined and compared, they are seen as rational, analytical thinking processes (i.e., reasoning). 

      • Slowly and painstakingly, the solution emerges. 
      • It comes as no surprise since you can see it coming. 
      • The logical processes that lead to the answer are known and may be used to both explain and check if the result is accurate. 

      Non-Insight problem solving is what it's called. 

      • When the unconscious mind solves a problem via selective combination and comparison, the solution arrives in awareness abruptly and unexpectedly. 
      • You don't see it coming, and describing the reasoning behind the answer is equally tough. As a result, the procedure is often characterized as intuitive. 
      • This is known as insight problem solving, and the terms "intuition" and "insight" refer to the same thing in this case: unconscious information processing. 


      There is still another significant distinction between conscious thinking and intuitive understanding. 

      • The conscious mind easily solves "simpler" issues that may be solved by applying reasoning to the information that is instantly accessible. 
      • The unconscious mind, on the other hand, excels in solving complicated issues with unique characteristics. 


      Non-insight problem solving isn't as successful when it comes to addressing complicated and nuanced issues, simply because awareness is a single, sequential process. 


      The unconscious mind, on the other hand, is made up of a huge number of mental processes that all happen at the same time. 

      It's the difference between serial and parallel processing in computers, to use a contemporary example. 


      • Because there is only one conscious mind, it must restrict itself to the most probable combinations and comparisons as decided by logic for the purpose of efficiency. 
      • This is especially constricting when it comes to comparing prospective solutions to past experiences (selective comparison). 
      • Although you have a large number of previous experiences, there are only so many comparisons that can be made in a given amount of time. 
      • That time must also be shared with other conscious activities. 

      • However, since there are numerous unconscious sub-minds working on the issue rather than just one, unconscious processing has no such limits. 
      • That's why the unconscious is so excellent at coming up with solutions that include novel perspectives on an issue. 
      • The unconscious mind is considerably more free to experiment with extreme combinations and analogies that may seem illogical at first. 

      • Furthermore, since selective comparison is so essential, insight solutions are often allegorical and metaphorical—that is, the answer is best expressed and conveyed via analogies. 
      • Finally, the unconscious mind has access to everything that is going on in the conscious mind, including both partial accomplishments and failures, and may use this knowledge to its advantage. 
      • The conscious mind, on the other hand, has no access to what happens in the unconscious mind until it awakens. 




      3. SOLUTION


      When we finally solve an issue, it may come in the form of a "insight solution," which is a quick, intuitive understanding given from the unconscious. 


      • A non-insight solution, on the other hand, is when we have the conscious sensation of "all the pieces fitting into place" when we methodically think about the issue. 
      • In the most basic example of the former, an insight solution appears out of nowhere and instantly enters awareness. 
      • When conscious thinking leads straight to an answer, this is the most fundamental kind of non-insight solution. However, this isn't always the case. 
      • As we'll see, both conscious and unconscious processes have played a role in reaching that conclusion in the majority of instances. 




      4. VERIFICATION


      Verifying the answer is the last stage in the problem-solving process. 

      Even rational, non-intuitive ideas need to be tested in the real world. 


      However, unless you're prepared to continue on the basis of a wild "hunch," intuitive insight solutions must first be verified by reasoning. 


      Such verification always takes place in awareness, and it is here that the conscious mind really shines in the problem-solving process. 


      • For societal, legal, moral, or other reasons, many otherwise effective remedies are undesirable. 
      • Furthermore, a solution that precisely matches the problem's broad pattern may still not meet the problem's details. 
      • To put it another way, it may work in theory but not in reality. 
      • In real life, issue solving is typically a recursive process, and most difficulties are solved by addressing a succession of smaller problems first. 
      • Both non-insight and insight processes are engaged because the conscious and unconscious portions of the mind system interact. 
      • The conscious mind creates the issue first. 
      • The conscious and unconscious brains then start working on it at the same time. 
      • New ideas on how to address the issue will "pop into the mind" while we're actively thinking about it. 
      • These are all insights, but none of them are certainly "insight solutions" to the larger issue. 
      • We next actively assess these concepts, determining whether or not they are useful—that is, we validate them using logic analysis. 
      • If these ideas don't offer the solution we're searching for, we continue to think about the issue, and as we do, other ideas emerge for consideration. 


      As you can see, neither conscious analysis nor intuitive understanding are automatically superior. However, they are a great match for each other. 

      They are much more potent when used together than each technique could possibly be on its own. 

      We see this in everyday life as well; we all know individuals who depend too much on reasoning or intuition to their disadvantage.


      You may also like to read more about Meditation, Guided Meditation, Mindfulness Mediation and Healing here.



      Analytical Meditation Technique - The Formal Approach



        This is a classic, organized technique that closely resembles the psychological problem-solving concepts. 


        The meditation is divided into four phases: 

        1. preparation and the first approach to the subject, 
        2. incubation and analysis, 
        3. the result, 
        4. and verification and review. 


        This technique is designed to help you make the most of both your conscious logical and unconscious intuitive processes. 


        • Set a timer for 45 minutes to an hour, as you usually would. 
        • Begin your meditation by following the four-step transition to the breath at the nose, counting ten breaths, and then tracking the breath until your mind is calm. 


        1. INITIAL APPROACH AND PREPARATION 


        Allow the breath sensations to fade into the background and bring to mind the subject you've selected for this meditation after you're fully present with a calm, clear mind and well-focused attention.


        • Keeping the breath sensations in peripheral awareness during this exercise is very beneficial. 
        • Simply "keep" the subject in mind throughout this initial phase. 
        • Allow it to “speak” to you by “listening” to it, exploring it, and waiting for it to “speak” to you. 
        • “Holding” a subject entails remembering it without evaluating it. 
        • If your subject is a passage from a book or something similar, open your eyes and read the paragraph without thinking about it, memorizing it. 
        • If you don't have anything written down, simply go over it in your head. 
        • If you have an issue, write it down as a question or a series of questions, and then ask yourself those questions. 
        • Simply bounce it around in your thoughts whether it's an idea or an observation. 
        • Staying in a receptive condition rather than doing anything is what “listening” entails. Wait for anything to catch your attention. 
        • By keeping the subject in your mind, you're allowing unconscious processes to go to work on it. 
        • The subject has "spoken" to you when something sticks out—when a concept or idea comes to mind, or when a certain word or phrase grabs your attention. 
        • This indicates that an unconscious brain process has provided the seeds of a potential response or solution. 


        As an example, picture a lovely golden thread that has gotten very knotted. This is the subject at hand. 

        Holding and listening to it is similar to gently twisting it in your hands, searching for a loose end to begin the untangling process. 


        • The subject has spoken to you when you discover the loose end. 
        • When a subject strikes a chord with you right away, you're ready to go on to analysis. 
        • In the preparation phase, you may find yourself holding and listening until your timer bell sounds. 
        • This doesn't happen very frequently, but if it does, know that your subconscious mind will keep working on the issue as you go about your day. 
        • Simply schedule your next session of analytical meditation and return to the subject then. 
        • If the subject still doesn't resonate with you the following time, it's possible that it's just too large. 
        • It has to be simplified. Consider concentrating on a single statement or selecting a more basic version of the issue or topic. 
        • Just take your time. Attempting to push the analysis too soon may stifle the very unconscious processes you're attempting to elicit. 


        2. ANALYSIS AND INCUBATION 


        Once you've found the end of the thread, follow it wherever it leads. 


        • Start thinking about the word, phrase, concept, or idea that came to mind as your beginning point. Analyze and examine it from many angles. 
        • As ideas occur to you, put them to the test for logic and significance. 
        • Explore the connection between your initial idea and other thoughts within the subject, keeping an open mind to the potential of uncovering some deeper significance. 
        • Stay open to any ideas or recollections from personal experience that may emerge, and evaluate their relevance when they do, no matter how abstract the subject may seem. 


        You want a degree of knowledge that goes beyond the abstract and intellectual to encompass the experienced, regardless of the subject. 


        3. THE RESULTS: UNDERSTANDING, RESOLUTION, AND DECISION, OR DEEPER INSIGHT 


        The goal is for your thoughts to lead to some kind of natural conclusion—an understanding, a solution or choice, or a deeper insight. 

        You'll have a feeling of achievement and completeness. 

        Proceed to the fourth step, confirming and evaluating, unless some detail necessitates additional study. 

        • Frequently, the result is just partial; it does not answer all of your questions. 
        • Nonetheless, go to the fourth stage if that partial result seems solid and substantial. 
        • You may come back to the main subject for a more detailed response at a later time. 


        Large, complicated subjects are often addressed via a succession of partial results, with previous conclusions sometimes being changed until a final resolution is reached. 


        • Recognizing the need for additional knowledge, observation, and experience may also be a result. 
        • You may also discover that you need to do something else before continuing. 
        • This is likewise a legitimate result, and it justifies moving on to the next stage. 
        • Once you've completed whatever it is you need to do, you may return to the original subject. 
        • However, the bell may ring to terminate your session before you have gotten a clear result. That's OK; your subconscious mind will continue to work on the issue. 


        Not only for analytical meditation, but for virtually any problem-solving scenario. Do something else and come back to it later if you aren't making progress on an issue. 


        • When you come back, your subconscious mind will almost always have a solution. 
        • Occasionally, the result will emerge unexpectedly while you are engaged in other tasks. In a peaceful time, your mind may return to this thought and offer a solution. 
        • If no result appears before your next analytical meditation, just start again with holding and listening. 
        • It doesn't matter if what calls to you the next time is different from what talks to you the first time. 


        The more you think about the issue in this manner, the more likely you are to find a solution. 


        4. CONFIRMING AND REVIEWING THE RESULTS 


        You don't want to lose an answer you've discovered, so be prepared to continue the process of checking and reviewing even if the bell to terminate your session sounds. 


        • You may wish to examine the route of analysis you took so you may repeat it in the future or explain it to someone else, depending on the nature of your meditation subject and its result. 
        • Return to the incubation and analysis step if you find a problem. 
        • If there are no flaws, the most essential thing is to consolidate and integrate your new knowledge so that you don't have to go through the whole problem-solving process again. 
        • It may be useful to establish mental "cues" for yourself to assist you return to this level of awareness and insight in certain situations. 
        • Holding the fruit of your meditation in mind as the goal of non-analytical meditation is a very effective method to accomplish this. 
        • To put it another way, use the thought, concept, or insight as your meditation object and allow it to grow in your mind. 
        • This leaves a powerful impression, allowing you to quickly return to this level of realization in the future by remembering the result of this meditation and focusing your attention on it.


        You may also like to read more about Meditation, Guided Meditation, Mindfulness Mediation and Healing here.



        Walking Meditation Technique - Staying In The Present



        Stage One walking meditation is straightforward and uncomplicated. 


        • To begin, it's all about exploring the current moment, as it was in Step One of the shift. 
        • As you walk, you allow your attention to wander freely while keeping your awareness open. 
        • The only constraint is that you must be completely in the moment, in the here and now. 
        • However, at the conclusion of this Stage, your attention will be completely focused on the sensations of walking, just as it was with Step Four of the breath transition. 


        WALKING EXPLORATION 


        • You must initially try with different walking speeds while carefully noting their differences before beginning the official walking exercise. 
        • Begin by walking at a slow, steady speed. 
        • Take note of how automated the process is, requiring very little effort. 
        • The mind may travel anywhere it wants. 
        • You'll notice a variety of things in your surroundings at first, but you'll soon get engrossed in thoughts and recollections that pull you away from the present. 
        • Simply draw your attention back to the present now by concentrating on the sensations in your feet when your mind wanders. 
        • Keep your focus on your feet for the next few steps to assist you remain in the present moment. 
        • Notice how this is similar to sitting meditation in that you may be aware of everything around you—sights, sounds, and other sensations—while maintaining your focus on your feet. 
        • As you walk at a regular speed, remove your focus from the feet and allow them to continue exploring the present. 
        • Then, as though you were in a rush to go someplace, accelerate. 
        • You'll notice that you have to pay more attention to direction, hazards, and footing at first, but that peripheral awareness soon takes over. 
        • You'll quickly find yourself thinking about things that have nothing to do with where you are or what you're doing, and you may even forget that you're meant to be meditating. 
        • It's far more difficult to stay in the moment by paying attention to the feelings in your feet: they're much too fleeting and variable to act as a reliable anchor. 
        • When walking rapidly, however, the entire action of walking—arms swinging, legs moving, torso rotating, and so on—works much better as an anchor for attention. 


        You just need to practice fast-walking meditation for a short time to understand the various impacts it has on the way attention and awareness function together, as well as your capacity to remain in the present moment. 


        • Finally, move extremely slowly, as if you're trying to hide. Take note of the lack of fluid movement and how almost every aspect of the process requires careful attention and control. 
        • Walking slowly not only helps you stay in the moment, but it also naturally directs your focus to your feet; if your attention wanders for even a few seconds, wobbling, instability, and loss of balance will rapidly bring you back to the present. 
        • Again, you're simply trying to get a sense of how speed affects your attention, awareness, and capacity to remain in the moment. 
        • This information will be extremely helpful at various stages of walking practice, enabling you to modify your pace for various reasons. 
        • Most people will find that one or two sessions of playing with various speeds is sufficient, but feel free to keep going as long as you're learning anything. 


        THE ACTIVITIES 


        • Choose a comfortable speed to begin your formal practice, one that is slow enough to see changes in the soles of your feet but quick enough to be largely automatic—what you could call "slow normal." 
        • As you walk, pay more attention to the sensations in your feet. 
        • They'll ultimately become your main meditation object, but for now, don't focus only on them. 
        • For the time being, your major goal is to walk in the present moment. 
        • This means you may shift your focus from your feet to whatever is going on around you at the time. 
        • However, they must always be deliberate attention shifts! 
        • There will be noises, fascinating and appealing visual things, even smells if you are outdoors. 
        • Allow your thoughts to investigate and notice them on purpose. 
        • Feel the sun on your face, the shadow on your back, and the wind on your face. 

        • Investigate and participate completely in these activities, absorbing everything in. 

        • Return to the feelings in your feet whenever an object of concentration fades or becomes uninteresting. 

         

        Stay in the present moment at all times. 

         

        • Explore and completely experience your environment with both concentration and awareness, but don't get caught up in your thoughts, which will pull you out of the present. 

        • To keep such ideas at bay, return your focus back to the sensations in your feet or legs whenever you notice your mind has wandered. 

        • As the novelty of slow walking wears off, your thoughts will become more frequent, and you'll have to focus more on your feet. This is very typical behavior. 

        • You'll ultimately be focusing your attention on the sensations of walking more or less constantly. 

        • You'll learn how to notice ideas in peripheral awareness while learning to prevent your attention from being grabbed. 

        • Return to the present by concentrating your attention on walking when you notice you've been thinking or remembering, but allow the idea or memory to continue to develop in the background of peripheral awareness. 


        You are not in the present when your mind is occupied with thinking or remembering.


        • Peripheral awareness of ideas or memories, on the other hand, is perfectly acceptable since it is the same as peripheral awareness of sights, sounds, or feelings. 

        • It's part of present-moment awareness to be conscious that you're recalling something, in the sense that you're aware of a memory coming up in the background. 

        • Being completely present also includes being aware that discursive ideas are arising in the background, or even being aware that you were engaged with such thoughts only a minute ago. 

        • You may watch thinking or remembering processes, let them continue in the background, and eventually let them proceed on their own with practice—all without ever leaving the present. 


        Walking while remaining in the present cultivates the same mental skills as sitting and paying attention to the breath. 


        • You're consciously focusing your attention on something interesting that comes up in front of you, or to the sensations in your feet. 
        • You're also always practicing peripheral awareness by being aware of everything around you. 
        • You're practicing introspective awareness whenever you notice your focus has wandered away from the current moment. 
        • You may also practice mindfulness while walking by utilizing focused and sustained attention in combination with peripheral awareness. 
        • The walking meditation described above should be enjoyable, soothing, and simple. 
        • The relaxed quality of walking provides a valuable antidote to excessive striving, keeping your practice in balance. 

        Sitting practice can easily become too goal-oriented and intense, so the relaxed quality of walking provides a valuable antidote to excessive striving, keeping your practice in balance. 


        • Keep in mind that emotions of pleasure and contentment are necessary for long-term motivation. 

        • As a result, combining your sitting practice with at least half an hour of walking meditation each day is the greatest approach to support and strengthen it.


        You may also like to read more about Meditation, Guided Meditation, Mindfulness Mediation and Healing here.



        Walking Meditation Technique - Stabilizing Your Attention



        It's considerably simpler to maintain peripheral awareness during walking meditation than it is while sitting. This is simply due to the increased number of stimuli to be aware of. 


        • However, it's also more simpler to lose focus of attention on your feet, which may lead to forgetfulness and mind wandering. 

        • You've become a lot better at remaining in the present, so you're ready to focus on attention stabilization in the following two stages of walking practice. 

        • So far, you've mostly utilized the feelings in your feet as an anchor to help you remain in the present when you've been distracted. 

        • Instead of diverting your attention to whatever is appealing or fascinating at the time, attempt to concentrate your attention on the sensations of walking for as long as possible. 

        • You'll need to alter your walking style to do this. 


        WALKING MEDITATION IN STEPS 


        • When we walk normally, the rear foot lifts before the front foot is fully planted on the ground. 

        • In Step-by-Step walking, you want to finish one step completely before moving on to the next. 

        • You'll have to walk a little slower at first, but the procedure is simple: don't move your rear foot until you've transferred your weight to your front foot. 

        • Always keep your focus on the feelings in your moving foot. 

        • Don't attempt to focus on both feet at the same time. 

        • Direct your focus to the opposite foot after the moving foot is securely planted with all of your weight on it. 

        • Keep your focus on the feelings in your moving foot until you've taken the following stride. Then shift and keep going. 

        • During Step-by-Step walking, it's simple to tell the difference between focus and peripheral awareness. 

        • Because your focus is on your feet and peripheral awareness largely takes care of itself, your primary worry may be stabilizing attention. 


        STOP whenever introspective awareness warns you that you have lost track of what you were doing and that your mind has strayed. 


        • Celebrate your “aha” moment of reawakening to the present, just as you did when you were seated. 
        • Give whatever your mind was preoccupied with a simple name to enhance your introspective awareness (see the section in Stage Three on Cultivating Introspective Awareness through Labeling and Checking In). 
        • Return your focus to the feelings of walking after that.


        You may also like to read more about Meditation, Guided Meditation, Mindfulness Mediation and Healing here.



        Walking Meditation Technique - An Intentional STOP



        When you were seated, you tightened your attention on the breath to combat distractions that were going to lead you to forget. When walking, the approach to dealing with distractions is a little different. 


        • Walking, particularly outdoors, exposes you to a variety of sights, sounds, sensations, and odors. 

        • Be aware of how your mind, particularly your attention, responds to certain situations. 

        • Instead of quickly refocusing your attention on your feet when a distracting sense item grabs your attention, spend a few moments to investigate the distraction. 

        • Whatever it is—a song, a wind, or the delightful warmth as you move from shade to sunlight—stop right where you are, even if you're in the middle of your stride. 

        • Direct your attention to the distracting item on purpose. 

        • Make it your new focal point of attention. 

        • Take your time to study it and really appreciate it. 

         

        When your curiosity wanes, return your focus to the foot that is ready to move and resume walking. 

         

        • The goal is to retain conscious control over your attention movements while you take in the whole of your experience. 

        • Try going outside or finding a more exciting place if you've been performing walking exercise in a somewhat confined and boring environment. 

        • This is the only method to look into sensory distractions. 

        • Focus your attention more carefully on the sensations of walking if the distraction is a thought, memory, or any other mental item. 

        • During these moments, though, feel free to ponder about the sensory things you're seeing, hearing, or experiencing, but do so gently. 

        • Don't get caught up in your thoughts and stay completely present. 


        For example, if you hear a dog barking in the distance, you may pause and think about where the sound is coming from or why it's barking while you listen. 

        But don't start thinking about the dog's owners, or what breed it is, or anything else that may distract you from the present moment. 


        • Simply focus on the sound and be conscious of any nagging ideas in the background. 

        • Try to be conscious of your thoughts while you're thinking. 

        • During walking exercise, your overall attitude should always be one of curiosity and pleasure. 

        • Stop walking, relax, and evaluate your state of mind if you ever feel the exercise is becoming tough or boring. 

        • You'll probably likely discover that you weren't really there in the moment.


        You may also like to read more about Meditation, Guided Meditation, Mindfulness Mediation and Healing here.



        Walking Meditation Technique - Stop And Go

         


        In early stages of walking meditation, there is a lot of stopping and beginning. When we discover we've forgotten something or our minds have wandered, we come to a halt. We also take deliberate breaks to deal with distractions. 


        • This kind of “stop-and-go” meditation is quite acceptable. In reality, everything is as it should be.  

        • Forgetting and mental wandering will become less and less common, just as they do in sitting meditation. 

        • Furthermore, distractions that may have previously drew your attention enough to justify an intentional stop are now well-known via peripheral awareness. 

        • You won't be stopping as often as you used to. 

         

        Begin the habit of "checking in" when you find yourself strolling for many minutes between interruptions. 


        • Instead of immediately continuing to walking after stopping to examine a distraction, check in on everything else in the same sensory area as the distraction. 

        • If you paused to listen to a bird, for example, after you've finished with the birdsong, take in and explore the whole soundscape before continuing on your way. 

        • As the number of distractions capable of capturing your attention decreases, don't wait for one to appear before checking in. 

        • After a few minutes of carefully monitoring the feelings of walking, for example, take a moment to check in on all of the other bodily sensations that are there in addition to those in your feet and legs. 

        • Spend a minute or two meditating on them, then continue walking with your focus on your feet. Switch to other senses after many repetitions with bodily feelings. 

        • Spend some time meditating on the noises around you. After a few repetitions, transition to visual experiences. 

         

        For as long and as frequently as you find helpful and pleasant, alternate focusing on the sensations of walking with pausing to concentrate on the contents of these three sensory regions. 


        • You may have ideas regarding the content of these sensory areas when you check in. 

        • In fact, you'll likely hear a lot of self-talk about what's going on and how your practice is progressing. 

        • To some extent, self-talk may help you remain on course, but by the time you're well into Stage Three, you should be using as little verbal thinking as possible. 

        • Silently practice being in the present moment. 

        • Allow your ideas to become words and then let them go. 

        • Of course, there will be some forgetting, which will lead to discursive verbal thinking as well. 

        • Just be grateful you become aware of these vocal ideas when introspective awareness exposes you to them. 

        • Then, instead of focusing on the words, turn your attention to the feelings in your feet. 


        You're not attempting to silence your mind or prevent ideas from emerging in the first place. 

         

        • Allow the words to come and leave at their own pace. 

        • Just don't pay attention to them. 

        • Learn how to watch, analyze, and even think without using words. 

        • Enjoy the journey of discovery! 


        Always keep in mind that at every stage of walking meditation, relaxation and enjoyment should take precedence. 

        Consider walking as a way of "staying in the present moment." 

        What started as a slip of the tongue has now evolved into my preferred method of expressing walking.


        You may also like to read more about Meditation, Guided Meditation, Mindfulness Mediation and Healing here.



        Walking Meditation - Increasing The Power Of Consciousness



        The following two stages are fairly similar and build upon any basic walking meditation techniques you may be using.


        • Attempt to maintain control of your attention's motions. 

        • Your attention will be drawn mainly to your feet's feelings. 

        • Allow any distracting ideas to exist in the background, but don't allow them take your focus away from the feelings in your feet. 

        • Keep a close eye on your vocal ideas in particular. 

        • As you go, let them come, let them be, and let them leave. 

        • Other physiological sensations, noises, and visual things are still well-recognized on the periphery. 

        • You may still deliberately shift your attention and study a new or intriguing feeling if it offers itself. 

        • Don't, however, stop walking. 

        • Continue walking and keep an awareness of the walking sensations in the background from now on when you shift your attention to another feeling. 

        • Nonetheless, you should feel free to take a break and check in at any moment. 

         

        To put it another way, don't stop for distractions that demand your attention; instead, once your attention is steady, you may stop at any time and freely explore your surroundings. 

        You will get new insights into how the mind works as this exercise progresses, allowing you to retain an attitude of curiosity, inquiry, and pleasure.


        You may also like to read more about Meditation, Guided Meditation, Mindfulness Mediation and Healing here.



        Walking Meditation Technique - Observing And Investigating



        While checking in, you may do a new activity called investigating and observing. 

        It's a development of the checking in technique that allows you to investigate some of the distinctions between attention and awareness. 


        To begin, take a moment to stop and focus your attention on your visual field. 

         

        • Shift your attention away from closer things and toward those that are further away. 

        • To keep your visual field fixed, try not to move your eyes too much—just change your focus. 

        • Observe how certain things are clearly viewed depending on where your eyes are focused, while others are out of focus and indistinct. 

        • Now move your eyes about and notice how things in the visual field's center are always crisp, while those in the periphery are less so. 

         

        Next, concentrate on a single item and notice how, as you study it more closely, other things in your visual area become less apparent. 

         

        • Compare how it feels to gaze at a tree vs a branch or a leaf, or a finger against a hand, for example. 

        • Take a new approach to these tasks. Develop a feeling of wonder, as if you're discovering the world for the first time. 

        • Much of what you see while looking at your visual field is due to the nature of vision and the eye's unique structure: it's a movable organ with a lens that can change focus. 

        • Hearing, on the other hand, is a whole other matter. 

        • The ear does not have the same versatility as the eye. 

         

        Despite the fact that these organs have distinct characteristics, they both function via attention and awareness. As a result, repeat the practice using your hearing sense. 

         

        • This enables you to distinguish which impacts are attributable to the organ's anatomy, such as eye vs. ear, and which are due to attention and peripheral awareness's various characteristics. 

        • Observe how the more you concentrate on one sound, the less clear other sounds become. 

        • Examine how the perception of local sounds varies as you listen for distant sounds, and how the perception of distant sounds changes when you listen for nearby sounds, and vice versa. 

        • Pay attention to a very faint sound before moving on to a stronger one. 

         

        You may also have an internal ringing, whining, or buzzing sound in your ears; pay attention to how your perception of exterior noises changes as you listen to internal ones, and vice versa. 

         

        • Next, listen to ambient noises to see if you can tell the difference between hearing and recognizing a sound. 

        • Take note of how the identifying process happens nearly instantly. 

         

        The source, direction, and your thoughts about what's out there in your surroundings are all part of a complex analytical process that leads to identification via inference and deduction. 

         

        • Other noises, which are more in the type of "noise," are not as readily identified and classified. Separately from recognizing sounds, practice hearing them. 

        • Start with the "noises," then go to sounds that are more readily recognized. 

        • When you have the opportunity, try to just “be” with a sound rather than analyzing it. 

         

        Discover the link between the sound that arises from stimulation of the sense organ, which is the real experience, and all the labels, ideas, and conclusions that the mind has tagged on. 


        • Rep the workout with different bodily sensations. 

        • This is comparable to the body scanning technique used in Stage 5 sitting. 

        • Temperature, pressure, touch, movement, and vibration are all modalities of experience that your attention may move, concentrate in on, expand, and differentiate. 

        • You may also investigate the feelings associated with the form, position, and placement of various bodily components, as well as the inner sense of the body as something stretched in space. 


        The distinctions between focus and peripheral awareness are highlighted in all of these sensory observations and studies. 


        • As you investigate these distinctions, you may be surprised to learn what really happens when your focus shifts from one subject to another. 

        • Take up Step-by-Step walking once again to discover the solution, but this time at a quicker, more automatic pace. 

        • Observe how various things come and go as objects of awareness, and how your attention changes naturally from one feeling to the next as they appear and go. 

        • Compare this to your eye movements while you walk, but don't worry about what's changing or attempt to figure out what's going on conceptually. 

        • Instead, allow direct observation and experience to lead to an intuitive understanding. 

         

        This last practice improves introspective awareness and attention control, as well as the habit of exploring without analyzing.


        You may also like to read more about Meditation, Guided Meditation, Mindfulness Mediation and Healing here.