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Finding inner strength through softness

Dear Integral Meditators,

I’ve had a couple of conversations this week with friends and clients about how much effort it is to meditate and still the mind. The article below explores how to work on stilling the mind with as little effort as possible, using the softness of the body.

In the spirit of softness,


Finding inner strength through softness

If we understand that our body and mind are co-arising symbiotically together in each moment, then we can start to observe how our thinking affects or body, and how the way in which we hold our body affects our mind. If you come back to your body from time to time in between periods of thinking, you will notice that your thinking has created particular patterns of energy and tension in your body. Those patterns of energy, feeling and tension in turn predispose us to continue thinking in a similar way to the thoughts that created them.
For example, If I have a habit of thinking in an anxious and insecure way about my relationships, then this creates a pattern of energy and feeling in my body that primes my mind to continue thinking in that way.
One simple way to reduce the amount that you think, and break patterns of compulsive thinking is to consciously relax your body so that it is no longer holding the tension of your thinking. You can use this simply to meditate and relax, or to break negative patterns of thinking that are not serving you, doing it whenever you find yourself stuck with compulsive thoughts. The technique is basically very simple; you make your body too soft to hold thoughts. How does this work?

  • As your sitting right now, over the next few out-breaths release tension from your body and feel it becoming soft like cotton, or like a cloud, or like a pillow, or like a feather or like jelly. Make it so soft that it is unable to hold the tension of a thought structure. As soon as a thought arises in your awareness it dissipates and dissolves away because there is no tension in your body to hold the thought.
  • Stay focused on your physical being, making it soft like the body of a baby at rest. As you do so you will observe how this creates a state of mental relaxation, where thoughts have real difficulty sustaining themselves, simply because you are feeling so relaxed and comfortable
  • You may/will notice as you are doing this that there are parts of your body that seem to be holding knots of tension. As you breathe out focus upon softening these specific areas, so that the tension is released.
  • Relax into the feeling of mental spaciousness and comfort arising from the physical softness of your body.

For many of us this technique may take a bit of getting used to because we are not really somatically attuned to our body and its feelings, we are kind of stuck in our head. However, once we start to get a feeling for it, we will discover a very energy efficient, simple and reliable method for being able to step out of our compulsive, habitual thinking mind into a state of presence and relaxation using the softness of our body.

© Toby Ouvry 2017, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website

Special 1:1 Coaching Offer at Integral Meditation Asia in January
The beginning of the year can be a great time to spend quality time on getting your mind, body and heart prepared for the challenges you are facing as the year progresses. With this in mind I will be offering a special 20% discount offer on all 1:1 meditation and mindfulness coaching services for the month of January at Integral Meditation Asia. This is a saving of Sing$120 if you book as set of 3x 60minute sessions, or Sing$44 per single session…click HERE for full details!

Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia

3rd & 4th January – New year releasing and inviting meditation

Starts Tuesday and Wednesday January 10th/11th 2017 – Transformation through mindful intention –a three module meditation course

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings from November, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Ongoing Mondays & Thursdays – Morning integral meditation classes with Toby

Saturday January 14th, 2-5.30pm – Relaxing your way to enlightenment – Regenerative meditations for releasing stress & connecting to your primally awakened state

Saturday 21st January, 9.30am-1pm – The six Qi gong healing sounds: Qi gong for self-healing & inner balance workshop

Saturday 25th February, 10am-5pm – An Introduction to Meditation from the Perspective of Shamanism
Sunday 26th February, 10am-5pm – Meditation from the Perspective of Shamanism Level 2 – Deeper into the Shamanic journey

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