FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1.) What does the mantra mean?
The mantra is meaningless. Its value is in experiencing it as a subtle sound vibration, not as a word with a meaning. It’s best to not assign meaning or write it down, or thinking about how it might be spelled, or even speak it out loud after receiving it in the lesson. Keep it to yourself. Don’t Facebook about it or bring it up in conversations. Don’t play the word association game with it. For best results, just reserve its use exclusively for your meditations.
2.) Can I lie down and meditate or sit in a recliner?
You should meditate while sitting comfortably. However, if you begin falling asleep, you can lie down in the meditation. But always start off sitting with your back supported and your head free to move about. Sometimes you’ll feel sleepy before you meditate, and during the meditation you’ll feel awake, and vice versa.
3.) Should I regulate my breath?
No. Breathing normally and naturally is best.
4.) How many meditations should I do a day?
The goal is to meditate twice a day, once in the morning, ideally before breakfast, and once in the evening, ideally before dinner. So, make sure you’re only doing two meditations a day.
5.) Can I use visual aids to help me think my mantra?
It’s best to just let the mantra come and go naturally. If you are experiencing visuals that are linked to your mantra naturally, then that’s fine. Otherwise, no need to force it.
6.) Is it okay to jot things down while meditating?
You can if you want, but it’s best not to. The point of meditation is to rest the body. Writing in the middle of meditation excites the mind and body. If it’s truly important, you’ll remember it.
7.) Is it bad to fall asleep during meditation?
Never. Falling asleep means your body is catching up on much needed rest. Most people are massively sleep deprived and meditation is a balancing agent. So, when you begin meditating, it’s normal to fall asleep a lot, and in doing so, the body begins paying off its sleep debt.
8.) If I get distracted, should I start over?
No need to start over. Distractions are a part of the journey. Whenever you get distracted, just treat it like you treat your thoughts be easy. and if the distraction lasts for five minutes, just add 5 minutes on to your finish time and pick up wherever you left off.
9.) If I keep over-meditating, should I use an alarm?
Over meditating will happen naturally from time to time. You don’t need an alarm unless you have something important to do immediately after the meditation. Then, yes, you may use an alarm, but make sure it’s a subtle alarm (don’t worry you’ll hear it) and set it for 25 minutes to give yourself a chance to come out naturally.
10.) Can we meditate for longer if we want?
It’s best to stop the meditation process at 20 minutes if you are aware that the time is up. However, you may continue resting with your eyes closed for as long as you want. And if you accidentally over-meditate, it’s fine.
11.) Should I set an intention for releasing stress?
It’s not necessary to set intentions beforehand. We want to just surrender to the body’s intelligence as much as possible. Whatever needs to be released in that session will be released.
12.) What are these weird sensations I'm feeling?
That’s what stress release feels like. It’s a good thing. Less stress for you to carry around.
13.) Is it okay to play music during meditation?
It’s not recommended but it’s optional
14.) If my body is distracting me during meditation, itching for instance, is it best to ignore this? As a newer practitioner, I suggest scratching the itch. After a while, itches won’t distract you as much
15.) Why do you not recommend meditating for more than 20 minutes? It’s not as sustainable for a non-monk to meditate regularly for more than 20 minutes daily. And your goal in the beginning is efficiency and consistency.
16.) In a crowded house, where is the best place to meditate? Wherever you can find privacy: closets, your car, the bathroom, your bed, etc.
17.) How do I know if I’m using my mantra correctly? It’s tough because there are different applications for mantras based on your technique and experience level. But this is also where working with a teacher can be helpful. My entire practice accelerated in ways I couldn’t have imagined after I started working with my meditation teacher.
18.) If my body is distracting me during meditation, itching for instance, is it best to ignore this? As a newer practitioner, I suggest scratching the itch. After a while, itches won’t distract you as much
Tips and ideas to consider
1.) If you're strapped for time, and you can only squeeze in one 10 or 15 meditation a day, at which time will you get the biggest bang for your buck? There’s evidence that the most advantageous time to meditate is (drumroll please...) first thing in the morning. Here's what the science says:
2.) to enhance the regions of the brain that are responsible for having positive emotions and experiences. So, no matter which side of the bed you wake up on, meditation will help to balance out to your mood.
3.) Meditation is a natural upper. The endorphins produced in your morning sit will boost your energy levels steadily throughout your day while simultaneously reducing stress hormones like cortisol, and this may even result in less caffeine consumption.
4.) You can set the tone for your day. The way you start your day will often set the tone for how responsive and adaptable you will be during your day. And even though the meditation itself may feel a bit scattered, it allows you to be more deliberate and mindful in your daily activity.
5.) What are the best times of day to meditate? The most important thing is to meditate twice a day. The best times to meditate are once in the morning and once in the afternoon or evening. For most people, i recommend that you meditate soon after waking up—before the never-ending onslaught of emails, texts, phone calls, and daily responsibilities begins.
Having said that, a friend, a full-time mom, and part-time professional photographer says: “My mom duties start from the second I wake up: making breakfast, preparing lunchboxes, getting everyone dressed and armed with their schoolwork and off to the buses. Suddenly, the house is quiet. I put the phone in airplane mode, slip into my favorite chair, and dive within.”
In other words, find the best times for you and your schedule.
A few reminders: It’s best to meditate before rather than after a full meal, such as breakfast or dinner. If you’re hungry, it’s fine to have a light snack before meditating. It’s also better to meditate before rather than after you have caffeinated beverages.
And if a vigorous workout is part of your morning or afternoon routine, it’s better to meditate before rather than right after you work out, or to allow time for your body and metabolism to cool down.
Again, the most important thing is to meditate twice a day. The best times to meditate are once in the morning and once in the afternoon or evening.
Shorter affirmations work best. For example,
“I am content in this moment.
My heart will guide me.
My treasures lie within.
The possibilities are endless”