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Natural Mind Meditation

10 Apr 2016   Shanti Gowans
1. Sit
Be seated on a cushion, or chair,
in a straight-back, but relaxed position,
with eyes slightly open 
and your gaze towards the floor.
Take a moment to feel the posture of your body,
the attitude of your mind,
and the flow of your breath.
Breathe calmly and normally.
Sit in stillness,
gently letting go of all thoughts,
raising a feeling of pleasant anticipation.
Induce a calm, meditative state.
Feel the intrinsic dignity of your being
in this posture.
2. Observe
When you are ready, and in your own time,
draw your gaze up,
so as to look directly forward,
into the space in front.
Now there should be a sense
of the openness of the infinite space
before you.
Thus you become centred, present and mindful.
Abide in the present moment,
in immediate nowness.
Whatever arises,
whether a thought, feeling, impulse or perception,
meet it without judgement 
or internal consideration.
Just label it as 'thinking' or 'feeling' etc.
As you exhale,
let it dissolve away.
3. The gap
At that very moment, on the out breath
as the thoughts or perceptions dissolve,
note the gap between thoughts.
It is the gap you want to cultivate and extend.
Rest the mind in this gap,
in the nowness,
without attachment to this or that,
like or dislike,
self or other.
4. The nature of the mind
It isn't sufficient merely to observe
whether there are distractions or not in the mind.
Meditation isn't to do with sitting in a blank state.
The aim is to recognise the nature of the mind itself,
to recognise the presence of the lucid awareness in the gap.
and to continue in that experience.
So, from time to time in meditation,
reflect on what the mind's nature is 
in and of itself,
in its basic ground, or being,
namely, when all else is stripped away,
the essence of mind is bare awareness.
Recognise that this awafreness has three qualities:
emptiness, lucid clarity and dynamic presence.
5. Emptiness 
The emptiness of mind's bare awareness is immediate.
When you recognise awareness, 
you see it is just present.
open and nothing else,
impossible to identify,
an umbounded state of mere knowing.
This is a condition of pure Being,
the indefinable ipse-ity,
the selfhood, individual identity, individuality of awareness.
It has not material form, colour or shape.
Nothing to touch.
Nothing to point to.
recognise this open spaciousness
as the empty quality of awareness.
6. Lucid clarity
Lucid clarity is the mind's natural knowingness.
What is known is an entirely separate matter.
The point is, lucid clarity is a state of knowing
which is its basic quality,
its nature.
When we see the emptiness of the mind,
we also see the mind's essential luminosity,
its knowingness.
This luminosity or natural clarity is
the sharp, lucid, penetrating intelligence of the mind,
just as it is.
Take note of the fact that this knowing quality,
which is inherent to the very ground of the mind,
is naturally self-luminous,
like a lamp that shines its light 
not only on everything around it,
but on itself as well.
As such, the term lucidity or luminosity
describes the mind's essential quiddity,
the quality that makes it what it is,
the mind's intrinsic essence,
its basic nature or character,
which is uncreated and original to itself.
Thoughts, feelings, impulses and perceptions
are simply expressions
arising within this lucid, knowing nature.
Recognise that whatever appears
has no separate or independent existence
from this awareness itself.
7. Dynamic Presence
Mind is not only empty and lucid,
it has a quality of dynamic presence.
In the present is the presence.
When you sit immediately in the 'now' moment of awareness,
this presence makes itself known as love.
Love is the eternal dynamic of the mind,
the inherent energy and basic goodness
of its all-pervading, all-inclusive omnipresence,
its ceaseless, absolute, sentient power
and natural creativity.
Relaxing into this,
the natural mind as it is,
you experience the most powerful meditation of all,
ever present dynamic awakening,
the ground of being,
suffused with love.
Recognise this state of ever dynamic presence.
8.  Natural Mind
Thus, abide consciously and wholly
in the immediacy of the mind's fundamental
Being, Nature and Dynamic.
Practice this each day
and note the subtle shifts
in your perception and attitudes.


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Shanti Gowans is the globally recognised author and founder of Shanti Yoga™, Meditation and Ayurveda for the self, family and community.

Shantiji has brought the concepts and practices of a healthy body and a still mind to thousands of Australians through her Yoga and Meditation programs on national television... Read more about Shantiji's biography

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