The Lotus heart meditation calms your nerves, addresses insomnia and helps adjust to jet-lag. Let’s how you can bring this technique in to your life.
I am on a mission to prove to people that meditation is easier than they think it is. Most individuals have an unrealistic definition of meditation and set themselves up for failure. As I have mentioned in earlier blogs, meditation is about following a train of thought and bringing yourself back to that train when you drift away.
The Lotus heart meditation is a very simple technique that calms your nerves after a turbulent, stressful day.
So lets get into it straight away.
Think of your mind as muddy water in a glass. The water is never clear because it is constantly agitated by a stirrer (called life). To separate the mud from the water, you have to let the water settle and let the glass container be. That’s what meditation does. The startup phase can be thought of, as the actions of keeping the glass still and stopping the stirrer.
The startup phase is an explicit stage that conveys to your mind that you are about to shift to a trance state and it should get ready for it.
Let’s use a simple technique here:
Think of a really good thing in your day today. It could be as simple as “I got enough water” or “I was calm most of the day”. Just be grateful for this one victory, thank yourself for achieving it and thank anyone and everyone who was contributed in your victory today.
Side note: Think about this - how often do we thank ourselves? Almost never! Take the opportunity to do that here now.
Situp straight and bring your attention to your heart. Observe your heart. Feel the heart expanding and contracting - really feel it.
Have you ever thanked your heart for constantly beating? Thank your heart. Really thank your heart for always being there for you - even if you don’t ask it to be.
Stay here for as long as you like. It is easy to stay here if you visualize your heart in color and feel the breath going in and out (It works well if you observe the heart as light pink in color).
Now, visualize a beautiful lotus in your heart. The lotus is pointed towards the heavens (or upwards). Visualize the lotus, see the vibrant color of the lotus, smell the fragrance.
Make it as real as you can.
It is not easy for some people (including myself) to visualize a color. If you find yourself wondering what the color is, agonizing to determine if it is pink or red or purple - this is a sign that your mind is interfering. The stirrer is agitating the water. Good news is that you recognized your mind is interfering.
This is what meditation is all about!!! Congratulate yourself for this victory and bring back your mind to the lotus.
If you are mind continues to babble - just pick your favorite color and visualize the lotus in that color. The color doesn’t matter. If you are debating what your favorite color is (happens to me a lot in meditation), the stirrer is stirring and you have recognized it and this is meditation too. Appreciate the victory and go back to the lotus.
Finally, see the lotus as fully bloomed on an inhale and completely closed on an exhale. Now do this as long as you.
Inhale - fully bloomed. Exhale - completely closed. Inhale - fully bloomed. Exhale - completely closed Rinse and Repeat.
Cure Insomnia and Jet-lag
Well, I did start by saying you can cure insomnia and jet-lag. So let me talk about my experience.
I practice this technique when I have a hard time sleeping. This is often my go to technique in flights and to fix jet-lag. I rarely have to go to drugs like melatonin when I am traveling. This technique is my go to drug of choice.
The reason for the success of the technique is that it induces a very deep state of relaxation. To the point that if you aren’t careful to situp straight you will drift off to sleep. The key is to practice the technique while lying down. Dim-lights etc do help.
One last thing, the more you practice the technique in bed, the faster you will fall asleep. I believe it has to do with the fact that your sub-conscious realizes that you are about to get to this boring place where you are making it do un-necessary work and it quickly shuts down.
I understand that this is a data point of one. So play with technique and see if it works. If it doesn’t use it for meditation - pick what works and don’t get hung-up on someone else’s experience. (That said, I will write about another technique called Yoga Nidra or Sleep Yoga in another blog)
End of the day practice
Make this as your go to technique to calm your nerves in the evening. Remember to sit up and practice. Then somewhere along the way slide into your bed and continue the practice to drift off to sleep.