Prepare to Meditate
Choose a Convenient Time
According to ancient Vedic texts, the hours of sunset and sunrise, times when nature is in transition, are ideal for meditation. But it is important to pick a time when you can give yourself a solid 15–20 minutes to press the pause button.
Find a Quiet Place
Pick a place where you are least likely to get disturbed. You may inform people around you about your meditation routine, so they can let you be for the span of 15–20 minutes. Quiet and peaceful surroundings can make the meditation experience more enjoyable and relaxing. Here at the Art of Living International Center, we’re nestled atop the gorgeous and calming Blue Ridge Mountains—an idyllic setting for you to dive deep into your soul.
Get Your Posture Right
When you sit for meditation, make sure your spine is erect. The spiritual energy which is believed to flow from the base of the spine to the top of your head leads you to a state of restful awareness. So, sit straight with your spine erect; keep your shoulders and neck relaxed; and eyes closed throughout the meditation. You need not sit in padmasana (the lotus position) to meditate, if you are not comfortable in it.
An Empty Stomach
Ideally do not have a full stomach when you sit down to meditate. Before meals is a good time to meditate at home or in the office. Meditating post-meals may make you feel lethargic as digestion consumes energy— you do not want to doze off during meditation. But, you may not be able to meditate on an absolutely empty stomach either. Hunger cramps can deter a good meditation experience. Meditating after a gap of at least two hours after meals is recommended.
Sukshma Yoga or sun salutations will get your body rid of the built up rajas or restless energy, so you can dive deep in your meditations. These exercises also improve circulation, get rid of the inertia, and make you feel light.
Observe Your Breath
Take a few deep breaths and observe the flow of breath in your body through the nostrils. You can practice a few rounds of alternate nostril breathing. Pranayamas or breathing exercises are a great way to prepare your body and mind for a deeply meditative experience.
A smile triggers the happy hormones in your body. A gentle smile on your face leads to a sense of relaxation, comfort and peace.
Open Your Eyes Slowly
On completing the SKY meditation practice, do not be in a hurry to open your eyes. Give your nervous system enough time to gradually get used to the activity in your physical surroundings after the meditation ends.
Note Sudarshan Kriya Yoga must be learned under the supervision of a trained faculty.