Listening to the Breathing – Free Meditation Recording (Plus Upcoming Mindful Breathing Workshop)

Dear Integral Meditators,

In each moment your breathing is providing you with a wealth of insight about the way in which you are thinking, feeling and experiencing your life. I’ve just created a short, 5 minute meditation on a practice I call “listening to the breathing” that will help you access that insight and use it to increase the amount of understanding, relaxation and ease that you experience in your life. You can have a listen to it right now by clicking here:

Listening to the Breathing Mindfulness Exercise (5mins)

Listening to the breathing is one example of the practices that I will be teaching in a short 2 hour workshop on Mindful Breathing on the 25th March. The full details are below.

Yours in the spirit of listening and awareness,

Toby

 

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Connecting to Your Spiritual Fool in the Mirror World

Dear Integral Meditators,

Normally when we think of the terms ‘you fool’ and ‘being foolish’ we think of them as derogatory, names that we would want to avoid being called or thought of at all costs. This weeks article explores a way of releasing the potential of our inner fool into our lives in a positive way using meditation and imagination.

Yours in the spirit of compassionate humor,

Toby


Upcoming Meditation Classes and Workshops at Integral Meditation Asia 

Tuesday 11th March, 7.30-8.30pm: Monthly Integral Meditation Class: The Way of the Enlightened Fool

Tuesday 25th March, 7.30-9.30pm: Introduction to Mindful Breathing – A Two Hour Meditation Workshop

Saturday 5th April, 2.30-5.30pm: Meditations for Creating a Mind of Ease, Relaxed Concentration and Positive Intention


Connecting to Your Spiritual Fool in the Mirror World

This is a creative meditation for accessing your Spiritual Fool. Your spiritual fool is that part of you that:

  • Is playful and creative
  • Combines wisdom and humor together into ‘crazy wisdom’
  • Is not afraid to take risks and chances when it is worthwhile
  • Is not trapped by the rules of conventional society (though will play by them when appropriate)

We are calling this fool the ‘spiritual’ fool as all of the above mentioned qualities are to be used for a compassionate and evolving purposes, rather than just behaving like an idiot (!)

The meditation:

You can do this meditation as an informal contemplation now if you like, as you read.

See yourself in an art gallery. You are sitting in the centre of the gallery; the floor of the gallery is smooth and reflective, as if for example made of marble. The picture in front of you is of a fool, court jester or harlequin. As you look upon the picture, feel yourself connecting to your playful, humorous, risk-taker; that part of you that is not trapped by the rigid conventions of society.
Now look down at the reflection of yourself in the floor beneath you. The reflection that you see beneath you is yourself as the spiritual fool. You may be dressed in old fashioned jesters clothing, or any way that communicates the feeling of yourself as a creative, playful, humorous being.
Now imagine that your world ‘flips’, such that the image that you see beneath you actuallybecomes you. You are dressed as the fool, your way of seeing and approaching the world is through the wise humour and compassionate playfulness of the spiritual fool.

Take as your object of meditation the experience of yourself as the spiritual fool.

During the day the idea when you are working with this meditation the idea is to keep seeing yourself as the spiritual fool, and to approach your daily activities, relationships and so forth integrating the ways of thinking, feeling and acting as the spiritual fool.
© Toby Ouvry 2014, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com

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Experiencing, Feeling, Interpreting – Mindfully Processing Our Reality

Dear Integral Meditators,

This weeks article looks at three domains of our reality that often get confused, and how by cultivating awareness of them we can increase our capacity to respond wisely to the challenges in our life.

Beneath the article there are full details of the “Way of the Enlightened Fool” meditation class on the 11th March. And a final reminder on the course front, the special early bird offer for Meditations for Integrating your Ego, Soul and Spirit  on the  ends March 6th

Yours n the spirit of wisdom,

Toby


Upcoming Meditation Classes and Workshops at Integral Meditation Asia 

Tuesday 11th March, 7.30-8.30pm: Monthly Integral Meditation Class: The Way of the Enlightened Fool

Sunday 16th March, 2.30-6pm: Meditations for Integrating your Ego, Soul and Spirit 

Saturday 5th April, 2.30-5.30pm: Meditations for Creating a Mind of Ease, Relaxed Concentration and Positive Intention


Experiencing, Feeling, Interpreting – Mindfully Processing Our Reality

When attempting to mindfully process our reality effectively, it can be useful to break it up into three parts:

  • What is experienced
  • What is felt
  • What is interpreted

These are three separate and distinctaspects of any event in our life. If we confuse one or more of them with the other, then this can cause a lot of unnecessary confusion and difficulty.
For example if I am already feeling low about myself and someone mentions in passing that I look tired (this is what I actually experience) then I may interpret that comment as an attack and respond aggressively. The other person may become confused or insulted and I may damage the relationship.
If however I break down and analyze the event down into its three aspects, my capacity to respond appropriately and without confusion is enhanced:

  • First in terms of my experience I isolate what has been literally experienced; an innocuous comment about the way I look
  • Secondly I am aware of how I feel; I realize that the feeling of low about myself was already there, it was not caused by what they said to me
  • Finally as a result of the mindful attention I have paid to steps one and two I interpret the situation effectively, thus not taking insult and over reacting

So, for this week if you would like to work with this, every time you come across a situation that you find challenging or where it is really important that you react/respond well and wisely just ask yourself these three questions:

  • What has been experienced in the literal sense of the word?
  • How do I feel about what has been experienced?
  • How have I interpreted what has happened, and is it appropriate?

Allow these three questions to lead you into a mindful investigation of what is really going on and help you to respond in a wise and thoughtful way.

© Toby Ouvry 2014, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


Integral Meditation Class: The Way of the Enlightened Fool

Date: Tuesday March 11th

Time: 7.30-8.30pm

Location: Gallery Helios, 38 Petain Road, Singapore 208103 (click HERE for map)

In a sentence: A chance for mediators of all levels and backgrounds to come together and meditate in a powerful and supportive environment.

Overview: These Integral Meditation Classes combine meditation training in the five stages of mediation practice and the five types of meditation skills with a particular theme. This month’s class focuses on an exploration of the enlightened fool.

Crazy Wisdom: The Way of the Enlightened Fool

In common language we normally use the term fool in a derogatory manner, in the same way that we might use the term ‘idiot’. However in terms of our growth as a person and a spiritual being the archetype of the fool has profound and important meaning as:An image that we can use to connect to our playful and creative self

  • A way of inviting ourselves to take positive risks in our life
  • A way of accessing our “crazy wisdom”
  • A way of positively accessing and dealing with our fears
  • A way of connecting to primal spirit in an unique and particular way

In this class you will be guided by Toby in meditation though a series of imaginative keys to help you gain personal access to your own crazy wisdom and enlightened fool!

Conditions for attendance: As mentioned above, this class is suitable for all levels of practitioner; beginners will feel supported, and more advanced practitioners will find that there is plenty of opportunity to develop, explore and consolidate their meditation.

This class is also available as an MP3 recording for those not able to attend in person.

Cost: $20, you can pay on the day, or make payment online below.

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE THE MEDITATION CLASS BY PAYPAL

For more information or to register your attendance contact Toby on info@integralmeditationasia.com or sms 65-96750279

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Bringing Congruence to the Mind Through Meditation – Three Ways

Dear Toby,

Congruence – To bring harmony, agreement and compatibility. This mid-week article is about how to bring congruence to the different elements of your mind.

After an enjoyable Greenworld Meditation Workshop last Sunday, there is a chance for anyone who wanted to come but could not to come along this Sunday, 2nd March for the second date!
Also on Sunday is the Introduction to Walking Meditation Workshop, registration for this will close on Thursday evening.
Finally, date for your diary I will be doing the Meditation and Mindfulness For Developing a Mind of Ease, Relaxed Concentration and Positive Intention on Saturday April 5th at the Reiki Centre.

Yours in the spirit of inner congruence,

Toby


Bringing Congruence to the Mind Through Meditation – Three Ways

 Imbalanced, fragmented, confused. Does that ever feel like the state of your mind? Here are three meditative methods to bring your mind from fragmentation to a state of relative balance and unity through meditation:

  1. Still your mind
  2. Focus on one thought or image
  3. Allow it all to be there

1. Still your mind – When your mind is still, all of its disparate parts start to come back into balance and settle naturally. If you can still your mind, you may not solve anything externally, but you will bring the different parts of your mind back into congruence with each other, and so when you do go back to your life you will do so with a new experience and perspective. One simple technique to still your mind is simply to sit still and focus your sensory awareness on the physical stillness of your body. By being physically still and focusing on that, you find that after a time your mind starts to become still through its attention to the body. Once your mind becomes still in this way you can then switch your focus from the stillness of your body to the stillness you feel within your mind, which you can now see and feel clearly.

2. Focus on one thought or image – Use one thought, image or even a physical object as your point of focus. By anchoring your attention to it, the other elements of your mind can ‘swirl’ around it, and gradually come back into balance simply as a side product of you placing your attention on one thing and letting everything else ‘even out’.

3. Allow it all to be there – Simply sit with everything in your mind without trying to focus, control or judge it. This technique involves gaining control and congruence within your mind by abandoning all attempts to control it. Simply sit and watch it, be with it without feeding any of it. The by-product of this allowing is that once more the different elements of the mind gradually come back into congruence and balance with each other.

None of these practices ‘solves’ anything, but by bringing congruence to your mind  they enable your natural intelligence to function freely, and encourage you to have confidence in your own natural capacity to bring your personal best to the challenges you face each day.

© Toby Ouvry 2014, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com

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Mindfully Expanding into Tension, Challenges and Growth

Dear Integral Meditors,

I’m keeping it very practical with this weeks article, it is a way of using your body awareness to enhance the way you approach emotions and situations you find challenging, enjoy!

Quite a lot of meditation and mindfulness courses to enjoy over the next few weeks, starting this Tuesday evening with the Meditation skills class. This is then followed by the 2nd opportunity to attend the Greenworld Meditation workshop on Sunday 2nd of March. On that same day there is a Walking Meditation workshop in the morning.

Finally, date for your diary, the Main March workshop will be Meditations for Integrating your Ego, Soul and Spirit which I should have the full write up for by the next newsletter.

Yours in the spirit of expansion,

Toby


Upcoming Meditation Classes and Workshops at Integral Meditation Asia 

Tuesday 25th February, 7.30-8.30pm: Monthly Meditation Skills Class and Coaching Session

Sunday 2nd March, 8-10.30am: An Introduction to Walking Meditation Workshop

Sunday 2nd March, 2.30-6pm: Meditations for Connecting to the Greenworld – An Introduction to the Path of Nature Mysticism

Sunday 16th March, 2.30-6pm: Meditations for Integrating your Ego, Soul and Spirit (Full details out shortly)


Mindfully Expanding into Tension, Challenges and Growth

This is a simple but profound somatic mindfulness exercise designed to change our perception and experience of threatening and difficult energies and situations.

Normally when we experience challenging emotions, difficult situations, anxiety and so forth our fundamental reaction is to energetically ‘contract’ away from it. This is experienced as a kind of energetic tightening or contraction within our chest.
The idea is to practice feeling the anxiety and rather than unconsciously contracting away from it, to consciously expand into it.

Step 1: Bring to mind a situation that is causing you anxiety, fear, discomfort etc in your life. Could be a relationship, a financial uncertainty, whatever.

Step 2: Observe the instinct that your body-mind has to contract away from the difficult energy. This is experienced most often as a tightening in the centre of the chest. It is almost like an effort to turn away from or deny the issue. Take a bit of time here to see and experience this as clearly as you can.

Step 3: Now, whilst holding the same situation in mind consciously relax/de-contract the energy in your heart. As you breathe out feel your energy opening and expanding into the circumstance and the feelings surrounding it. By doing this, invite your body-mind to be friendly with the challenge you are facing. Do this for a few breaths or even a few minutes. Observe how this simple expanding into, rather than contracting away from changes the dynamic of your experience. Get comfortable with the discomfort.

Step 4: Now ask yourself the question “What is it that this situation offering me? What opportunities for growth and creativity are there?”

I was a reading Harry Potter to my daughter last night, and Professor Dumbledore said to Harry whilst they were in a dark cave, crossing a still lake filled with dead bodies “It is the unknown we fear when we look upon death and darkness, nothing more”.
If we make a habit of expanding into our own challenges rather than contracting away from them, perhaps we might find the same kind of thing?

© Toby Ouvry 2014, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


Sample feedback from meditation coaching client:

I was a relative mess when going to see Toby. Talking to someone always helps, but Toby’s easy “beginner’s” meditation sessions were a great way to control the anxiety I was suffering. I also found Toby relating his personal experiences to my own as a great way of telling me that I wasn’t alone. I would recommend this style of coaching to other people. Whilst Toby has had a different background to most of us, he is an “every day” guy which helps one relate to their own issues and makes the “strange new world” of meditation, easier to approach. Toby is a professional operator – BW

Click HERE to find out more about Toby’s 1:1 Coaching Services

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Meditating with the Mirror Self

Dear Integral Meditators,

This mid-week article outlines a creative meditation practice on an aspect of self that I think of as the “mirror self”. One of its main purposes is to stimulate the potential of our imaginative capacity to effect real and dynamic changes in our life.
The meditation is an example of what I have been calling a Greenworld meditation practice, so here is a final reminder of the Greenworld Meditation Workshop I will be running this Sunday 23rd February, and repeating due to demand on Sunday 2nd March.

Below the article you can find full details of the Walking Meditation that I will be running, also on the 2nd March, 8-1030am.

Finally, if the article below looks a little long for you, then you might just enjoy watching the three minute reference to the ‘mirror world’ in the third installment of Pirates of the Caribbean, in the scene entitled “up is down” ;-)

Yours in the spirit of the creative imagination,

Toby


Meditating with the Mirror Self in the Greenworld

This is a technique for connecting to a primal and dynamic aspect of ourself that is mythic and imaginative in nature. Its purpose is to experience a new dimension of ourself that is unfettered by the habits of our conventional personality and that offers us a new level of creative participation in our world.
To say that the mirror self is mythic and imaginative in nature is not the same as saying that it has no objective reality, but it is to say that it exists within the reality of the creative imagination.

What or where is the Greenworld?
The mirror self resides in Greenworld. The Greenworld is a place that exists within the primal imagination of the planetary being and group consciousness. It is not so much a physical world so much as an energetic one. It is a place that all of us participate in to a greater or lesser degree in our dreams and imagination. However, rather than being merely a by-product of our imagination it is rather an actual  place that we contact and visit through controlled and conscious use of our imagination.
It has various names in the different spiritual traditions of the world. In Celtic Greek and Roman tradition it is sometimes called the Underworld. In the Tibetan Tantric tradition (which I originally trained in extensively) it is called Dakini Land. It is said to be the land of nature spirits and spiritual beings of various sorts, as well as the land where we may find the spirit of our ancestors.
You might also say that it is a world that has been contacted by artists thru-out the ages for for imaginative inspiration.
I call it the Greenworld. I have been engaged in meditations that directly or indirectly involve it for about 15 years now, and it is a practice that I hold very dear to my heart.

What is the mirror self?
The mirror self, simply put is that aspect of ourself that resides in the Greenworld right now. Since the Greenworld does not exist within the confines of conventional time and space, you could say that our mirror self is ever present, simply waiting to be discovered by us.
The Greenworld is almost like a pure inner world that mirrors out outer world. Hence the self that we meet there we call the ‘mirror self’.
Again, you won’t gain a satisfactory experience of your mirror self by looking for rational and linear ways of connecting to it, for it is connected to by means of the creative imagination. In the integral development of consciousness rationality and the creative imagination are not seen as contradictory to each other, rather as complementary capacities that we can develop together within our consciousness.

The meditation 

The meditation is rather simple:

  • Sit quietly. Be aware your body-mind and bring it to a place of relative stillness by focusing on the breathing for a short while. Then focus your intention on the desire to connect to your mirror self within the Greenworld.
  • Now imagine that you look down between your feet, and see there appears to be another, upside-down you beneath you. It is as if you were sitting on a mirror; the soles of your feet touch the soles of his/her feet. As you look down, s/he looks up.
  • See the form of your mirror self. Likely s/he looks like you but different. Her clothes may come from a much earlier time in history. His body is solid and yet also luminous and radiant. You may notice particular colours and energies around and within her body. Notice and currents of energy that you may feel rising from your mirror self through the soles of your feet.
  • Now imagine that your world ‘flips’ upside down, so that you become your mirror self. Experience yourself as your mirror self. What is it like? How does your body feel? What is the mode of thinking and feeling in your mind?
  • What you are ready ‘flip’ back again and return to the outer world. Take the experiences and perspectives that you gained from your mirror self into your daily life. If you like you can keep an awareness of your mirror self by imagining him/her beneath you whenever you look down, the soles of your feet in contact with hers!

© Toby Ouvry 2014, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


An Introduction to Walking Meditation Workshopkuhonbutsu-feetDate: Sunday 2nd March 2014

Time: 8.00-10.30am

Location: Singapore Botanic Gardens, meet by the steps at the Exit of the Botanic Gardens MRT next to the Nursery Gate of the Botanic Gardens (click on link above for map!)

One line summary: Learn how to practice meditation and mindfulness as a walking practice.

Overview: Increasingly many people are becoming aware of a need to find a sense of inner calm, peace and centeredness in order to cope effectively with the stresses and strains of modern life. However, it seems equally difficult to find the quality time for a practice such as meditation or mindfulness that can actually help us to accomplish this.

A solution to this can be found in walking meditation. All of us do a certain amount of walking in our life. By learning mindful walking we can combine the time that we spend walking with time spent cultivating our inner peace, stability and happiness. It is a win-win situation!

This 2.5 hour workshop will be located in the peaceful surroundings of the Botanic Gardens,

The RESULTS that you can expect to gain from engaging in this workshop are:

  • Confidence in practising the basic fundamentals of walking meditation and how to integrate it into your daily routine
  • Knowledge of the technical theory behind walking meditation practice
  • The ability to connect to positive mind-states as well as greater levels of physical energy whilst walking

The level of this workshop: Suitable for beginners, or more experienced meditators looking to integrate mindful walking into their repertoire.

Basic Workshop Structure:

First hour: Warm up, Introduction to basic walking meditation techniques for awareness of good posture, developing relaxed concentration and inner silence/spaciousness. Time for Q&A.
Second hour: Integrating elements of thinking, feeling and imagination into walking meditation in order to generate and enhance both our physical energy as well as positive mind states. Time for Q&A
Final half-hour: Integrating awareness of nature and the natural landscape into our walking meditation in order to enhance positive energy exchange between ourself and our environment, and receive healing and balancing energy from natural elements of the landscape such as trees and water, sun and sky.

In addition the class itself you will also receive: Backup notes covering the basic meditation techniques covered in the class

Feedback from past walking meditation workshops:

1: ”The outdoor walking helped me easily connect to nature on a holistic scale and feel energized nurtured and a strong sense of belonging (perfect timing) it put things into perspective. I felt incredibly at ease and peace.”

2. ”I was amazed at how simple Toby’s steps are, and how ‘portable’ walking meditation can be as a practical, everyday energy balancer or enhancer. You can literally take it wherever you go, wherever you are …in the park, on the beach, in a busy airport, and even in the confines of your own home. An instant, private oasis of tranquillity at your feet!”

Cost of Workshop: $65 per person

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE WALKING MEDITATION CLASS BY CREDIT CARD

To register or for further enquiries: Email info@integralmeditationasia.com, or call 65-9675027

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Re-awakening to Your Vital, Creative and Spiritual Energy

Dear Integral Meditators,

What are you looking to get from your meditation practice? Different types of meditation practice lead to different results. This weeks article looks at the aims of Greenworld meditation, and outlines a simple technique that you can do to enjoy some of the benefits of this type of practice, most prominently a re-awakening of your vital, creative and spiritual energy.

Yours in the spirit of inner vitality,

Toby

 


Re-awakening to Your Vital, Creative and Spiritual Energy

I was talking to someone who regularly attends my workshops the other day about the upcoming “Meditations for Connecting to the Greenworld” workshop. She had been under the impression from the title that the point of a Greenworld meditation would be something to do with being eco-friendly, recycling and so forth.
Actually the Greenworld meditation practice has nothing directly to do with these types of thing, although practising it will in all probability change quite radically the way in which you see yourself in relation to the Planet and to Nature.

So, what is the main purpose of Greenworld meditation? 
Greenworld meditation functions to connect us with a tradition of spiritual practice that has been practiced by people all over the planet for millennia. It is a perennial form of meditation practice, that is to say that it has been long lasting, recurrent and continuing throughout human history. It is a spiritual practice that does not belong to any religion.
Greenworld meditation puts us in imaginative contact with the forces of life within the Planet, and by relating to these living forces we are able to:

  • Heal and regenerate our own vital (sexual), creative and spiritual  self.
  • Participate in the returning to health of the Planetary being/Mother Earth, and play our part in the healing and regeneration of the vital, creative and spiritual energies within nature.

How does Greenworld meditation do this? It works primarily by using our creative imagination to put us in touch with the living and energies of the planetary being and encouraging us to participate in those energies in a fulfilling and health giving way.
The nice thing about the Greenworld meditations is that they are essentially very simple, but once activated they effect changes and transformations within us that are often profound and, subtly or not so subtly life changing.

A Simple Greenworld Meditation
This meditation aims is to connect our own vital, creative and spiritual energy to the same three energies within the planetary being, so that they flow through us freely, and we in turn are empowered to participate in them fully.

Stage 1: Sit comfortably. Be aware of a direction in front of you and behind you, to your left and to your right, above and below. See and feel yourself in the centre of the six directions and spend a short while stilling your body-mind in this centre point.
Stage 2: Visualize yourself in a landscape within nature that you associate with healing, health and regeneration. Sense the Planetary being beneath you as a living force and energy. See the energy from the planetary being flowing up into your body through the soles of your feet, filling your whole body with living energy and light. In particular see three energy centres being filled and energized:

  • The middle point in your lower abdomen , the centre of your body’s vital, relational and sexual energy
  • The point within the centre of your chest, the centre of your body-minds creative and higher imaginative energy
  • The point in the centre of the brain as the centre of your body-minds higher mental and spiritual energy.

Be aware now of the sky and stars above you. See their light and energy coming down through your crown and energizing your head, heart and abdomen with their energy.
Sit comfortably and allow the vital, creative and spiritual energies of the Planetary being below and the sky and stars above feed, heal and re-awaken your own vital, creative and spiritual energies.
This can be done as a short 5 minute energization exercise, or as a longer more contemplative one where you spend a few minutes focusing on the vitality of each of your three energy centres.

I’ll be writing an article mid-week next week on taking this one stage further by engaging in a practice called Connecting to the Mirror Self in the Greenworld.

© Toby Ouvry 2014, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


Sample feedback from Meditation coaching client in 2014:

“I found the sessions were easy to follow and at the same time effective. The principle or technique taught was pretty pragmatic/logical, hence easy to understand and practice.
I have seen a good improvement on my approach and handling of day to day ups and downs, since I do the daily meditation at home.
I would definitely recommend other people to attend the sessions.” – DL

Click HERE to find out more about Toby’s 1:1 Coaching Services

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What is Mindfulness? – Remembrance, Penetration, Assimilation +1

Dear Integral Meditators,

This mid-week article attempts to give a really practical working definition of mindfulness that will enable you to see how it might be applied to multiple circumstances in your own life.

 

Yours mindfully,

Toby


What is Mindfulness? – Remembrance, Penetration, Assimilation +1 

What is mindfulness?

To be more present is the most common generic answer that you might receive when you ask such a question. What I want to do in this article is to give a clear working definition of mindfulness and its process, and talk a little about its applications. This working definition has four parts.

Part 1: Remembrance
First of all to be mindful of something means to keep it in mind. Therefore if you want to practice mindfulness you need to be able to develop the skill of being able to remember, or keep in mind that which you wish to be mindful of over an extended period of time, without forgetting it. To take the simple example of the breathing, if you wish to practice mindfulness of the breath you need to be able to focus on the breathing without forgetting it!

Part 2: Penetration
So, why bother being mindful of the breathing (to stay with this example). The purpose of being mindful of the breathing is to gain an intimate knowledge of it, to understand it truly, or to put it another way, to penetrate it. If you are mindful of the breathing for a while you start to discover its nuances; how it reflects and describes your emotional state, how it relates to how you feel about your body, how it reacts to the different thoughts as they pass through your mind. Previously the breathing seemed like an uninteresting object. Now as a result of being mindful of it, it begins to reveal its secrets and wisdom to us. The penetration of our object is the second part and goal of mindfulness practice.

Part 3: Assimilation
Stage three of mindfulness practice is to assimilate the knowledge and wisdom that your remembrance and penetration have given to you, and to make them a part of your life. When we discover the wealth of information and knowledge that our breathing is giving us about our emotions, thoughts and body, we can then start to use that knowledge to do things like:

  • Treat our emotions with more compassion and positive control
  • Help us to deal with stress and anxiety more wisely and detect it earlier
  • Help us carry our body in a more relaxed and confident way
  • To open our mind out to our reality even when we may feel like closing it.

This third stage of assimilation is the process of learning to apply your mindful insights in a way that has real, tangible effects on your daily life.

Stage 4: Expression 
The fourth stage of mindfulness practice is to then demonstrate and communicate the essential energy and wisdom that you have gained into your daily life. To demonstrate to others what it means to be mindful of your breathing and the benefits that come. You can do this just by example, or there may be some form of formal way in which you teach it.

So, there you go, Mindfulness = the process of remembrance, penetration, assimilation and expression. The nice thing about this definition is that you can use it to develop mindful penetration of any number of different objects. For example there are 33 different objects that I outline in the “One minute mindfulness” section of my meditation blog. Once you know what mindfulness consists of you can even create your own mindfulness practices to help you accomplish the goals that you have in your own life.

© Toby Ouvry 2014, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com

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From Distraction to Intuitive Imagination (Meditation secrets for running a business)

Dear Integral Meditators,

Meditation and mindfulness help us to overcome our distractions, but they also activate deeper and higher aspects of our active and dynamic mind. This weeks article explores one way in which this is so and outlines a technique you can use in your daily life.

Finally, I have placed another coaching feedback at the bottom of the newsletter for those that may be interested in gaining some insight in to what the sort of results are that come from doing coaching work with me.

Yours in the spirit of intuitive imagination,

Toby


Classes For February at Integral Meditation Asia:

Thursday 13th February, 7.30-8.30pm: Advanced and Intermediate Integral Meditation Class and Coaching

Sunday 23rd February, 2.30-6pm: Meditations for Connecting to the Green World – An Introduction to the Path of Nature Mysticism

Tuesday 25th February, 7.30-8.30pm: Monthly Meditation Skills Class and Coaching Session


From Distraction to Intuitive Imagination (Meditation secrets for running a business)

Meditation starts as a process of reducing the distractions and fantasies of the everyday mind and moving into a space of stillness.
As we progress in meditation however, a new form of intuitive activity and imagination starts to emerge from the stillness. It is different in nature from everyday distractions and has great meaning and practical use.
This “intuitive imagination” differs from the everyday distraction of the ego in that:

  • Our everyday distractions are basically a combination of the events of our life in combination with out egos fantasies about them.
  • These everyday ego fantasies/distractions have the nature of a conceptual struggle to arrive at solutions to the challenges of our life.
  • Our intuitive imagination emerges from a place of stillness and awareness and comes up with succinct images and ideas, mostly effortlessly, that inform us as to what the best creative solutions to our life challenges may be.
  • In short our distracted ego struggles, our intuitive imagination flows.
  • When our intuitive imagination is functioning effectively, it is not that the ego is no longer present; it is just that it is in a state of relative harmony and balance. It no longer trying to be in control of everything, but is happy to be along for the ride.

One example of the way in which I use my own experience of intuitive imagination is in the everyday running of my company, Integral Meditation Asia. As fundamentally a one man show I basically have to do everything, from accounts to content creation, to marketing, to website, to coaching to class teaching. On top of this is also childcare and of course the everyday running of a household (after ecstasy the laundry as the saying goes, followed by more laundry…).
So basically each day I have a multitude of business activities that all seem to be asking me to do them “right now”, and my poor confused ego does not know which one to pick! So here is what I do:

  1. Stilling: I sit down and still my mind for a few moments
  2. Considering the totality: I bring to my awareness the totality of my business activities, and my feelings about those activities, I let my intuitive mind just flow over this totality, taking it in
  3. Asking the question: I then ask the question “what is the most important activity that I can do for my business today?” I don’t try to figure this question out, I just sit with it with a sense of curiosity
  4. Receiving the image: After what is often a very short while my intuitive imagination will feed me an image of the activity that MAY be the most worthwhile thing to do, but at the very least will be productive, and if I do it mindfully it will generally be enjoyable.
  5. Repeat if necessary: I then do that activity. If later in the day I face a similar dilemma, I repeat the process.

The above example illustrates the way in which I use my intuitive imagination in my everyday work. It is also the way in which I create most of my art work.
To begin practicing it in your own life you simply need to select the area of your life that you want to work with, and apply to it stages 1-4 of the process I have outlined above, repeating as and when necessary.
© Toby Ouvry 2014, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com


Sample feedback from Meditation and Shadow coaching client in 2014:

“I got more than I was expecting!  I thought I was coming for some generic meditation training, to help me focus and meditate more effectively.  What I’ve had is deep emotional coaching, a much better understanding of what meditation is about and how it can be brought into day to day life to help deal with whatever emotions come up.  In addition I’ve now had 3 very different meditations to practice, all tailored to my personal needs.
Would you recommend coaching with Toby to other people, and for what reason?
I already have!  Because I’m sure everyone gets very personal attention and the coaching is tailored to individual needs, it feels very flexible and creative.”

Click HERE to find out more about Toby’s 1:1 Coaching Services

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Finding Your Spiritual, Physical Home

Dear Integral Meditators,

Where is your spiritual home? The midweek article below explores one answer to this.

Quick reminder for those who may be interested in the “Meditations for Connecting to the Greenworld” workshop, tomorrow Thursday February 6th is the last day to catch the early bird offer.

Yours in the centre,

Toby


Finding Your Spiritual, Physical Home

What do you think of when you think of the words ‘my spiritual home’?

One way of relating to this question is as the place on earth, the geographical location where you feel most deeply connected and nurtured, perhaps the place where you were raised, or a place where you “found yourself”.

A classical meditators way of relating to this question is to identify the formless timeless dimension of existence, beyond all places and locations as our spiritual home, the place where we find God or Enlightenment.

Within the path of the Greenworld there is a different answer; home is simply in the centre of the six directions. Wherever you go, wherever you are, there is a direction in front, a direction behind, a direction to the left, a direction to the right, a direction above and a direction below. Your spiritual home is in the centre of these, “wherever you go, there you are!”

This may all sound quite obvious, but it is also very profound. The centre of the six directions is a place that you can recognize and rest in at any time, regardless of whatever else is going on in your life.

Sitting or standing simply recognize the direction in front, and behind, to the left and to the right, above and below. Feel your body mind and soul in the centre of that space. Looking for home? There you are.

© Toby Ouvry 2014, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com

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