With the closing of this Thanksgiving week, I have new reason to be grateful. The past few days birthed the opportunity to watch-and-wait with regard to a growing concern, and eventually to welcome a positive outcome. As the events swirled and unfurled, I felt queasy, almost motion sick: Soon, however, chances to rectify the circumstances appeared, and the existential nausea dissipated. Finally, with the situation remedied for the time being, a weary calm prevailed. With the passing of the problem came the reminder that with persevering prayer and faith, the Right Thing will occur—that it is the only possible result. For the great gift of divine guidance, I give thanks. Because the gift is one that keeps on giving, so will be the eternal nature of my gratitude.
I make vague mention of a concerning, challenging scenario that cropped up early in the week. The creeping worry or burgeoning frustration that initially seemed to define the situation ultimately proved to be illusory distraction from the deeper Truth of the story at hand. Further, some proverbial Silver Linings shone through the frantic messiness that threatened to upend the week: It was almost as if the Future were paying a short visit— a preview reel of sorts. But the highlights were not images or promises; rather, they were demonstrations that what we want, plan for, and even believe we foresee rarely play out in the way our earthly mind envisions.
The person at the heart of last week’s brief intensity has, throughout her life, returned time and again to the Lord’s Prayer for solace (“Our Father who art in Heaven…”). Ironically, although the ways and words of my prayers tend to be of a different ilk than those of traditional Christianity, one of the greatest take-aways of the Lord’s Prayer permeated my thoughts throughout the week’s challenge: “…Thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven.” My own internal reading added another “will” for emphasis: I could soften into the events, knowing that “Thy will will be done…” I could surrender into the unveiling of the problem’s resolution, for in the end, only one outcome ever would be: God’s will.
While not everyone thinks in these terms, most of us who have any interest in or enjoy the philosophy intertwined with spiritual development can acknowledge an analogous perspective: Fate, Destiny, Eternity, Universal Consciousness…. Such concepts underscore the illusory, temporary nature of this earthly realm. When “God’s will will be done” rings loud and true in my mind, a freeing separation from earthly binds occurs: A connection to all that was and will be deepens.
With the felt insertion of Faith into the mix of last week’s brouhaha, earthly energy began to quake and make room for for the delivery of quiet awe and gratitude. On this Silent Sunday, I present a reminder set of basic techniques that will reawaken a stale or relinquished spiritual practice; deepen an existing one; or that may be the foundation for a meditative sit with no stated intention.
The elements are all focal points: Third Eye, breath sound, and sensory awareness of mudra shape. In any aligned seated position, first create Gyan Mudra: thumb tip touching index finger tip on both hands; hands rest on knees, palms up. This mudra calls upon and ushers in communication with Divine Wisdom. Whatever your beliefs or practices, this mudra acts as an ambassador to all.
Next, with eyes closed, begin to deepen each inhale and exhale; feel the expansion and retraction of the belly and rib cage, and listen for the sound of your own breath. Note any jaggedness or strain; think of how the diaphragm moves down upon inhalation, and retracts upward as you exhale. Allow your throat to open, and your tongue to relax; this will create a chamber for the echo of your breath. If, as you meditate, your find yourself drifting into the world of thoughts, refocus on the sound of your breathing.
The final point of focus, or drishti, is the Third Eye. Underneath your closed lids, direct the eyes up to the spiritual center aove the bridge of your nose, between the brows. Connect your inner eye to this portal of divine energy; let the strength of your focus pave the way toward the pineal gland, so that your inner rhythms can move in accordance with the eternal spiritual vibration.
And with these three tools, you sit. Periodically check in with the felt awareness of the connected fingertips; the sound of your breath; and the infinite realm of the Third Eye. Remain with these reminders of the divine within you for as long as you like; return to them time and again.