Meditation on concentration of attention
Attention is power, the beginning of creation.
Rigden Djappo (from the book “AllatRa“)
“Now we will practice the simplest meditation on the concentration of attention, so that you can learn how to control the Qi energy,” said Sensei. “But before that, I would like to repeat again for those who came late. In addition to the material body, the human also has an energy body. The energy body consists of an aura, chakrans, energy channels, meridians, and special reservoirs for energy accumulation. Each of them has its own name. I will tell you about them later in detail, depending on the meditation.”
“And what is a chakran?” I asked.
“Chakran is a tiny spot on the human body through which different energies enter and exit. It works….so for you it would be easier to understand it, like a diaphragm in a camera. Do you know what that is?”
We nodded in agreement.
“It is the same way with chakrans; they instantly open and instantly close.”
“And does all that energy really come out in that instant?” Slava was surprised.
“Well, it’s not like emptying a bucket of water. After all, a human being is an energy and a material creature, where energy and matter exist by their own laws and time. However, they are fully interconnected and interdependent. Any other questions?”
Everyone was silent.
“Then let’s begin. Right now, your objective is to learn to feel the movement of air inside of yourselves, the movement of Qi. You all think that you understand and feel yourselves perfectly. But I’m pretty sure that you can’t see right now, for example, the toes of your feet. Why? Because you don’t have internal vision. Internal vision, just like internal feeling, can be trained with time, in everyday training. That’s why we will start with the simplest and easiest meditation. We’ll try to learn to control thoughts and feelings, to evoke them and to guide them.
“All right, now make yourselves comfortable and relax. Calm your emotions. You may close your eyes, so nothing will distract you. Dissolve all your thoughts and everyday problems in the emptiness.”
As soon as that phrase was spoken, I recalled a pile of tiny household chores.
“Gosh! Those impudent thoughts again,” I thought. “You were told to get dissolved.” my persona tried again not to think about anything.
“Concentrate on the tip of your nose…”
With closed eyes, I tried to “see” the tip of my nose, guided more by my internal feelings. I felt my eyes strain slightly.
“Now breathe in deeply, slowly and gradually. First, with the bottom of the belly, then with the belly, chest, raising shoulders… Slightly hold your breath… Slowly breathe out… We concentrate our internal vision only on the tip of the nose… You should feel and imagine that the tip of your nose is like a small light bulb or a small flame, and it flares up with your every breath out… Breathe in… Breathe out… Breathe in… Breathe out… The flame flares up more and more…”
At first, I felt a slight burning and pricking in my nose. It felt as if I were filled with something material, like a jug with water. Later on, I thought I could see a dark, distant contour of a tiny purple spot around my nose tip. At first, I couldn’t focus on it clearly. Finally, when I was able to fix my vision on it, it started to light up from inside. Moreover, when breathing in, the light narrowed, and when breathing out, it widened. When I got used to breathing this way, I heard Sensei’s voice.
“Now switch your attention to another part of meditation. Slightly raise your hands a little forward, palms down. Breathe in as usual: through the bottom of the stomach, then through the stomach and chest. Your breath out should be directed through the shoulders, hands, to the centre of your palms, where the chakrans of the hands are located, and through them into the earth. Imagine that something is flowing through your hands, Qi energy, or light, or water, and then overflows into the earth. This flow rises from the bottom of the stomach up to your chest, and there it is split up into two streamlets and overflows into the earth through your shoulders, arms, hands. Concentrate all your attention on the feeling of that movement… Breathe in… Breathe out… Breathe in… Breathe out…”
A thought flashed across my mind, “What does it mean to breathe through the hands? How can that be?” I even panicked a little. Sensei, obviously feeling my confusion, came up and placed his palms over mine, without touching the skin. After some time, my palms began to burn, like two stoves, spreading warmth from their centre to the periphery. And what astonished me most of all was that I really felt tiny warm streamlets pouring through my shoulders. In the region of my elbows they weakened, but I felt them very clearly overflowing through my palms. Deep in these new, unusual feelings, my persona asked myself, “How am I doing this?” While I was thinking it over, I lost the feeling of the streamlets. I had to concentrate again. In general, it worked with variable success. After one of my next attempts, I again heard Sensei’s voice.
“Close the palms of your hands in front of you, firmly clench them so that the chakrans of the hands close and the movement of energy stops. Take two deep, fast breaths in and out… Lower your hands and open your eyes.”
After the meditation, when we started to share impressions, I understood that everyone experienced it differently. Tatyana, for example, didn’t see the flame; instead, she felt some kind of light movement through her hands. Andrey had a shiver in his legs and light dizziness. Kostya shrugged his shoulders and answered, “I didn’t feel anything special, except a pins and needles sensation. But that is quite a normal reaction resulting from the oversaturation of the body with oxygen.”
“After the third, fourth breath in, yes,” answered the Teacher. “But at the beginning, the brain fixes the thought, in particular before the movement of the Qi. And if you listen to yourself, relax and breathe in deeply, you will immediately feel a widening or paresthesia feeling in the head, or in other words, a certain process happening there. That is exactly what you need to understand – what is moving there, and learn to control it.”
“Why didn’t I feel anything?” asked a disappointed Slava.
“And what did you think about?” Sensei asked half in jest.
It turned out that Slava didn’t really know what he had been expecting, maybe some kind of a miracle. Sensei replied, “Right, that’s the reason you didn’t feel anything, because you concentrated your thoughts not on the work but on waiting for some extraordinary miracle. But there won’t be a miracle until you create it yourself… You shouldn’t wait for anything xtraordinary just because you breathe correctly or concentrate on something. No. The biggest miracle is you, yourself, as a Human! After all, where does all the great spiritual Art lead? It helps you become Human so that you gradually wake up and recall the knowledge that was given to you primordially. These meditations are merely a means of awakening from spiritual lethargy and recalling long-hidden and forgotten information that you knew and used once upon a time.”
“What do you mean knew?” Slava didn’t understand.
“Well. For example, everyone knows how to read, write, count, if, of course, he is without mental disorders. Right?”
“But first he had to be taught. While later, he automatically reads, counts and so forth. In other words, he already knows that, for example, one plus one equals two, two plus two equals four. It seems so simple and real! But at the beginning he was taught all this, although, in truth, he simply recalled it. These are hidden, subconscious abilities. Or, here is another easier example that has to do with the physiological level. If a man who doesn’t know how to swim is thrown into the water, he will drown. But it has been proven and confirmed by deliveries in water that a newborn baby, when lowered into a pool, swims like any other animal. So, does this mean that he already possesses these reflexes? Indeed. But later it’s simply forgotten. It is the same with a human. He has a lot of knowledge that he doesn’t even suspect he has.
“But… all of this works only with a positive factor. If some mercenary interests prevail in him, for example, to learn to cheat somebody or to be able to hit someone with energy from a distance, or maybe he wants to be able to bend everyone’s spoons so they throw him money, he will never achieve anything. Only when a person learns to control his thoughts, when he becomes Human with a capital H, only then will he be able to achieve something.”
“So, spiritual practices are a method of awakening a human?” Andrey asked again.
“Absolutely right. Spiritual practice is only an instrument for repairing your mind. And the result depends on how you use that instrument. In other words, it all depends on the desire and skill of the master. And in order to learn how to hold this instrument in your hands, it is necessary to control your thought, to concentrate it, and to see it with your internal vision. In our case, it means to learn to control our breath, to feel that you breathe out through the chakrans of your hands. You need to learn to evoke certain feelings so that later you will be able to control the internal, hidden energy.”
“In my opinion, this is a hallucination,” remarked Kostya.
“Yes, a hallucination, if you regard it as a hallucination. But if you regard this energy as real power, then in reality it will be real power.”
“It’s strange, but why?”
“Because, I repeat, a thought controls action. While energy itself is an action. That is all. Everything is very simple.”
…During this discussion, while the other guys were listening, Slava was carefully examining the palms of his hands. And as soon as a lengthy pause appeared in the discussion, he hurried to ask, “I don’t completely understand about chakrans. You said that there should be opening points. But there is nothing in here!”
The senior guys laughed.
“Of course,” said Sensei. “Visually, you won’t see anything like that… You see, chakrans are certain zones on the human body that are more sensitive to warmth,” the Teacher patiently explained. “They, of course, can’t be seen, but really can be registered by modern equipment. For scientists, just like for you, these zones are still a mystery: the cells are the same, the connections are the same, but their sensitivity is higher. Why? Because chakrans are located here. And chakran belongs to the astral body, that is, to another, more profound physics. A thought is a binding link between the astral and material bodies. That’s why it is very important to learn to control your thoughts… It is then that you will be able to really guide Qi movement inside of your body.”
* * *
… The discussion switched to other problems, including the meditations practiced by us at home.
“I again felt this paresthesia,” Kostya said. “Is that normal?”
“Of course. What is the point of it? You have to feel this paresthesia that appears with the first breaths in your head. You have to feel how it ‘runs’ inside of your arms and, most importantly, how it “jumps out” of the centre of your palms into the earth. That is, you have to feel your inward and outward breath. And you should not have any outside thoughts at all.”
“This is the most difficult thing to do. When I concentrate on the tip of my nose, the thoughts start coming to my head, catching on each other. And the most amazing thing is that I do not even notice when they appear.”
“That’s right. It shows that we are not used to controlling our thoughts in our daily life. That is why they guide us in any direction they want, confusing us in their ‘logical’ chains. And the uncontrolled thought may lead mainly to negative things since it is controlled by the animal nature of a man. That’s why there are different spiritual practices and meditations, to learn, first of all, to control the thought.”
We talked a little more about the concerns of our home practices. And then we began the next meditation.
“Today we will unite two parts of the meditation into one,” Sensei said, “so that you understand how it should work and aim to reach it in your individual training. Now find a comfortable standing position…”
Following his words, we relaxed as usual and concentrated on the meditation practice. First, we concentrated on the tip of the nose like before. Then the Teacher said, “Do not distract your attention and vision from the tip of the nose. Take an inward breath with the bottom of your stomach, with your stomach, chest… Outward breath through shoulders, hands, chakrans of the palms into the earth. With the outward breath, a small light flares up more and more. Breathe in… Breathe out… Breathe in… Breathe out… Concentrate on the nose tip… Breathe in…”
That’s when I found myself completely confused. As soon as I began to concentrate on the ‘streamlet’, which I could feel clearly as a partial movement through the arms, I immediately lost control over my nose tip. And as soon as I began concentrating on the ’flashing’ nose tip, my ‘streamlet’ disappeared. It all happened when I had ‘unnecessary’ thoughts. Somehow, I was unable to combine it all. During one of my next attempts, I heard Sensei’s voice, which informed us of the end of the meditation. As it turned out, this happened not only with me but with my friends as well.
“It is natural,” Sensei said. “You should not be thinking, just observing. Then you will succeed.”
It seemed completely unachievable to me. But I was encouraged by the fact that Nikolai Andreevich and the senior guys didn’t have any problems with this meditation. “It means that there’s still hope,” I reassured myself. “If they can do it, why can’t I do the same? I just have to practice hard. That’s the point.” It was then I realised that even in my thoughts, I had started to speak using Sensei’s words. While I was reflecting on this, one of the guys asked a question.
“So, you want to say that the way to self-cognition starts with observing yourself and your thoughts?”
“Of course. Mastering of self-observation and control over your thoughts can be achieved little by little during everyday training. And for this you need an elementary knowledge base. It’s a natural approach to any training, either physical or spiritual. Just a simple example. A man lifts a weight of 20 kg. If he trains for a month, he will easily lift 25 kg, and so on. The same happens at the spiritual level. If you are prepared, it will be much easier for you to master more difficult techniques.”
“But there are a lot of different meditations and modifications. It’s difficult to understand which one leads to the pinnacle,” Kostya, as usual, made his education known.
“It’s too far to reach the pinnacle. All these meditations that exist in the world are just an alphabet that has always been there. And the real knowledge leading to the pinnacle starts with the ability to put together words from this alphabet and to understand their meaning. Reading the books is, like they say, a privilege of the chosen ones.”
“Oh my! Everything is so complicated,” Andrey said.
“There is nothing complicated about it. You just need the desire.”
“And if one has the desire but hesitates?” Slava asked.
“If a person has doubts, if someone should beat his head with a heavy sledgehammer so that he understands that – yes, it is truly a sledgehammer, then that means that such a person is very much stuck in the material world, in the logic and egoism of his thoughts, his mind… if he possesses one at all, that is.”
The guys smiled at these words, and Sensei went on.
“If a man sincerely strives towards self-cognition, with pure faith in his soul, he will surely succeed. It’s a law of nature… And it is even more so for a spiritually developed individual.”
Andrey said thoughtfully. “Well, the alphabet is clear, but I don’t quite understand about the
composition of words. Is that also a meditation?”
“Let’s say, it’s something higher – a spiritual practice, an ancient primordial technique that allows one to work not only with the consciousness but, what is more important, with subconsciousness. There is a set of certain meditations that lead to a corresponding spiritual level… It’s simple. The main point is that an individual should overcome his Guard, his material thinking, with its invariable desires to stuff the gut, put on a rag, and conquer the whole world… The same eternal truth as usual, and the same eternal stumbling-block. Should an individual step over it, he will become a Human.”
From the book by A. Novykh “SENSEI”