Meditation Workshop at PennState University

Good afternoon everybody. Today I would like to introduce the meditation technique according to the term in Buddhism. Meditation means the training of the mind. Why do we train the mind? The mind is very important. The mind is master. The Buddha said if we train the mind and get rid of the defilements from the mind, that means we can find peace of mind. Mind is very important. Mind is the chief. Mind is master. If we do or think or act with polluted mind, then suffering will follow us. Or if we act or think or speak with purified mind, so that happiness will follow us. This is the word of the Buddha. In Buddhism we focus on the mind and have to train the mind to become a pure mind. So the technique that I would like to share with you today is the meditation for strength and relaxation. The meditation you might know many, many techniques. But today I would like to explain and demonstrate to you the basic technique. The technique for today is just for the basic one. The one you want to practice. You can practice at home or anyplace. First of all, I would like to show you how to sit, because there are four postures altogether. One is the sitting meditation, another is the standing and walking, and lying meditation.

I. [Sitting an Breathing Exercises.] O.k., start with sitting meditation. Now sitting meditation. You can sit crossing your leg. Put the right one on the top the left one and put your right hand on the left one on top of your leg. Sit straight back and relax. Or you may put your hands on your knees. But you have to sit upright and straighten your spinal cord and relax. When you put your hands on your lap, try to relax your shoulders, relax your neck, relax your whole body. Every part of your body should be relaxed. You may sit on the cushion, or may sit on the chair or sofa, as you feel comfortable. But you are required to sit upright. When you sit comfortably, and then close your eyes and close your mouth. Try to focus your mind on your breath. When you breathe in, focus your mind at the nostril. You will feel the air passing in and out in the nostril, and fix your mind on that spot. This is the first step to focus your mind on the breathing. And then move your mind to follow the air. When you breathe in, take a deep in-breath. The air will go to your abdomen. Your abdomen will fall and rise when you breath in and out so that you can fix your mind on that spot. When your abdomen rising, and then notice that rising. When you breathe out or exhale, your abdomen falling down, and then fix your mind on that spot. Just observe the falling and rising at your stomach or abdomen. So in this way you can fix your mind on one point. Because meditation try to put your mind on only one spot. And then relax your body. When you close your eyes, you visualize your entire body. See your sitting posture in your mind. And then relax from the feet to the head, up and down, up and down. Relax your feet, relax your ankles, relax your knees; relax your thighs and buttocks. The lower parts of your body should be relaxed in your sitting meditation. And then the middle parts of your body from the navel up to your chest. Relax your spinal cord. Sit upright, and your shoulders should be relaxed. So from your shoulders down to your navel, the middle parts of your body, should be relaxed. And then move your mind to your neck, your chin, your face, and your head. Try to relax the upper parts of your body. Set your mind at the top of your head and see or visualize your entire body in your mind. So by this way you can see yourself inside not outside. When you check all your body relaxation, and then back to the normal breath. Just observe breathe in and breathe out. You breathe in and you know that you breathe in, and when you breathe out, you know that you breathe out. Be mindful all the time. Don’t pay attention to any kind of sound that can distract your mind. Just focus your mind on the breathing, that we call the breathing exercise. So you can sit as long as you can. Start about five minutes, and then you can increase to ten minutes, fifteen minutes, or thirty minutes, or one hour, as much as you can. But the important thing is try to relax and take it easy. Don’t stiffen up your body; just relax your body and your mind. So you will find the peace of mind this way. Don’t fear and worry in any case, just know it and let it go, and relax. So by this way you can sit and get real happiness from the meditation technique.

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