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Author of this essay:

Abbot John
(November 18, 2004)

THE IMPORTANCE OF MOMENTS: Restarting the Regime
by Abbot John

A yana is a vehicle that gets us where we want to go. Yanas, like Buicks, are able to go only so far on a given tank of gas. Beyond the point of that empty tank, they won't move. They are stalled and it's up to us to refuel and restart. It helps to be aware of the problem. Changing tires won't restart the engine. If you find yourself stalled on this highway, here are a few tips about re-starting your meditation engine.

1. Everything depends upon the moment. Knowledge comes like lightning. Take a parental interest in yourself. Just as you would ask your boy when he came down to breakfast, "Did you brush your teeth?" and then search his face for the lie that is forming there so that you can say with unquestioned authority, "Go brush them!" You do not even have to ask yourself if you've done your Nadi or Meridian cleansing, if you have done what must be done. It will be clear to you. At the moment you become aware of your laziness or passivity in this practice THAT IS THE TIME TO ACT. In that moment do what must be done. These are the important moments, seize them. To allow these moments to pass is to allow the inertia of mortality to assert itself again. Do it today for tomorrow may not be. You are your parent. There is an excuse for being a thoughtless child. There is no excuse for being a neglectful parent.

2. In all starting points of meditation (meridians or nadi) pay very close attention to your breathing. It must be rhythmic and it must have "retention" points - at the inhalation and the exhalation. The length of time it takes you to inhale... or hold the breath... or exhale... should be natural. The important part is being aware of the pulsations that are felt in the cleansing process. It must not be a "gasping" breath, but lightly done This "breathing" causes a quick pull of the mind into the body and all its massive points of pulsations (in the hara area especially, it will seem as if you are stirring water in a pot.)

3. As the mind relaxes into the pleasurable states that seem to emanate from the Ajna point or near the top back of the head it may be difficult to pull your mind away. Yet this is the best time to circulate this pleasant sensation around the meridians or nadis. Your traveling focus appears to wash and massage the internal system in a very refreshing way. All the points of focused stopping then become less a matter of imagination and rather one of pure observation.

4. I always like to return to the Ajna for a brief recharge before "coming out" to sustain the memory - also those sensations are then more easily revisited during the day with little or modest effort, after a time.

5. An attitude of reverence both going in and coming out will also help to fortify you.

Just a thought or two for those that have stalled and are trying to get moving again.  If you need "maps" of the various meridians, drop me a note.

John, Abbot-elect.

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