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Five Steps To Creating Your Own Meditation Objects


Dear Integral Meditators,
Is it possible to create your own, personal objects of meditation, your own ‘mindful vocabulary’? The article below explores how you can start doing exactly that, today!

In the spirit of creative awareness,


Five steps to creating your own meditation objects (Building your own mindful vocabulary)

For me meditation is not just about following a formal set of rules and processes like a robot, it is about being creative and building my own mindful language of living ‘meditation objects’ that I experience in a very personal way and that moves me, changing the way in which I experience my world. This article explains a simple method by which you can create your own meditation objects using a simple, five stage process, using compassion as an example:

Stage 1: Select and define your object – If I want to meditate on compassion I need to come up with a working definition. When doing this by yourself, you have full license to define it in your own way, but here is mine for the sake of this example: Compassion is a state of mind that arises when I experience care or love for others or myself, I understand the ways in which they or I suffer, and I develop the wish to alleviate that suffering, or at least express understanding and/or healthy empathy.

Stage 2: Contemplate in a freeform way around your object – Having defined it, now ask key questions about your experience of compassion such as:

  1. When have I personally experienced compassion in the past, what did it feel like?
  2. Which people I know, personally or from the public sphere really embody the energy of compassion for me?
  3. If I practised 10% more compassion today, what might change in my perception and experience?

Contemplate these questions one by one in a freeform way. Explore the ways in which you have experienced compassion, who inspires you in terms of their compassion, and what the benefits of compassion might be in terms of bringing it into your own life.

Stage 3: Focus in – Having contemplated in a general way, now select the most powerful experience of compassion that arises from stage 2; the most powerful memory, the most inspiring person, or the most motivational insight into the benefits of compassion. The defining characteristic of your selection is that it must move you personally, such that the emotional experience/energy of compassion arises in your body, it is not just an intellectual abstraction.

Stage 4: Sink into, absorb – Once you have decided on the particularly powerful object of compassion in stage 3, you then simply focus your attention gently upon your object, allowing the feeling and power of it to sink deeply into your awareness, creating a gentle but powerful impact. It can be nice at this stage to mount the feeling of compassion in the breathing; as you breathe in feel yourself connecting and experiencing the compassion, as you breathe out feel yourself sinking into and absorbing the experience.

Continue to explore in daily life – After the formal meditation, keep looking for ways to explore, feel and express compassion in your life. Flex the ‘compassionate muscle’ that you have started to build in your meditation as you go about your daily activities, looking for ways to integrate it into your way of going and being in the world.

So there you go, a five stage process for building your own meditation objects. What objects of meditation would you like to build into your own practice this week?

© 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


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Wolf Therapy – The Subtle Dimensions of Meditation and the Mind

Dear Integral Meditators,

What if there were an endlessly creative and imaginative aspect of your mind that you could learn to tap into at will? The article below explores how you can discover this domain by developing the the subtle dimension of your meditation practice.

The meditation workshop this Saturday afternoon is an exploration of this subtle, imaginal domain of meditation:  The Call of the Wild–Meditations for Deepening Your Inner Connection to the Animal Kingdom and the Green-world

Last calls also for tomorrows  Wednesday Evening Meditation Session on Benevolence, and the Mindful Self-Confidence workshop this Saturday morning.

In the spirit of the imaginal world,


Wolf Therapy – The Subtle Dimensions of Meditation and the Mind

Normally we think about our mind as being in our body. For many people this is further reduced to our mind being our brain. Whilst it is true that our brain acts as the interface between our mind and our physical body, a meditators perspective is that it is really the body that is in the mind. The mind is not limited by the physical body and can extend itself naturally and easily beyond the physical body.

Three levels of meditation
In meditation we practice three levels of awareness:

  • Outer world awareness – Awareness of the physical-sensory experience we have of our outer world, and the everyday discursive thoughts and human emotions that come with it
  • Inner world awareness – Awareness of the inner worlds of our imagination, and dreams together with the subtle bodies, energies, thoughts and feelings we may experience there
  • Formless awareness – Awareness of the dimension of consciousness that lies beyond form, or time or space; the formless timeless dimension of the mind

The subtle, inner world or imaginal dimension
The second dimension of meditative awareness attunes us to the level of our experience where we dream and imagine. The subtle or dream world it turns out is a series of inner worlds, somewhat like our outer world, where we can explore landscapes, meet other people and creatures, make discoveries, learn and do research and generally enjoy our inner life in a healthy way. To live there and enjoy its riches is something that a child is quite naturally able to do, but adults end to get it whipped out of them by the time they leave school, or have it warped out of shape, which is a shame. Creative forms of meditation enable us to get back in touch with our inner world and begin travelling again.

An example: Wolf Therapy
As a seasoned integral meditator, every day I have numerous experiences in the inner world. Actually, you do to, but you may not be aware of them, or be unable to distinguish them from the ‘everyday noise’ in your head. Some are when I am fully conscious in daily life, others are in dreams, and others are in meditation. Here is one example from my journal:
‘I am lying down in meditation. I detect an imbalanced energy in my sacral area that starts to throb with pain as I become aware of it. I request help, specifically from my inner world animal guides. I almost immediately sense a she-wolf lying on top of me with a male wolf to my right side by my head.
The she wolf has her genital area above my belly button, I feel her healing energy flowing into my sacral area as a gentle warmth. The male wolf next to me is ‘talking’ to me about how to deal with my current challenges, how to be ‘happy foraging and seeking’ as he puts it. It seems he is working with me on my mindset! I arise from the experience feeling energetically balanced in my sacral area, and with a new mental approach to my circumstances.’

Becoming a conscious daydreamer
There are many ways to get back in touch with the inner world again and start to enjoy it, but one simple way to start is just by becoming more aware of the ideas, images, landscapes and characters that drift in and out of your awareness during the day and pay attention to them; being alert to the significance that they may have. Become a conscious or mindful daydreamer.

Related articles: Three Dimensions of Mindful Daydreaming
From Distraction to Intuitive Imagination (Meditation secrets for running a business)

© Toby Ouvry 2015, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website

Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia in May:

JUNE 2015

Wednesday, June 24th 7.30-9pm  – Integral Meditation Session @ Basic Essence – Meditating on benevolence & inner wealth

Saturday 27th June 9.30am-12.30pm – Mindful Self Confidence – Developing your self-confidence, self-belief & self-trust through mindfulness & meditation

Saturday 27th June, 2.30-5.30pm – The Call of the Wild–Meditations for Deepening Your Inner Connection to the Animal Kingdom and the Green-world

July schedule coming soon!

Integral Meditation Asia

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Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology
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The Soft Strength of Mud and Blood

Dear Integral Meditators,

Seems like the theme of my articles since the turn of the year seem to be centering around finding strength through softness, the article below offers a slightly different take on this…

Yours in the spirit of mud and blood,


Upcoming Courses at Integral Meditation Asia :

Special offer for 1:1 Coaching For January at Integral Meditation Asia  (Via skype or face to face)

Sunday 1st February – Mindful Self-Leadership: Take Control of Your Life Direction and Wellbeing Through Awareness, Curiosity, Courage and Care

Tuesday 10th February, 7.30-9.30pm – An Evening of Mindful Resilience – Sustaining effectiveness, happiness and clarity under pressure through meditation and mindfulness

Saturday 14th February, 2.30-5.30pm – Mindfulness and Meditation For Creating a Mind of Ease, Relaxed Concentration and Positive Intention 

The Soft Strength of Mud and Blood

I a meditation that I did last Sunday with a small group, there was a section in the narrative where we visualized ourselves sitting or kneeling in front of a Goddess embodying the energy of death, regeneration & renewal, and were asked to offer her something.
Within my own visualization I found that I had a small locket in the shape of a heart that had been broken in two, so I offered this to her. In return she offered me a small physical heart fashioned from mud and blood. It felt soft, wet, warm and alive in my hand as I held it.

Honouring the brittle and the broken
Often when life is hard on us, we can become hard and brittle in response; we use the part of us that has been hurt, damaged or broken as a shell that we place around us in order to protect ourselves. This is a natural response to difficult challenges, and it is ok to allow ourselves to go through a stage where we withdraw, wounded into this shell. However, there comes a time, if we are interested in regenerating our life, where we have to let go of what is broken, and emerge anew, soft, vulnerable but fully alive into our world again.

The strength of regeneration
If we are able to do this we discover what I would call the strength of regeneration – The experiential knowledge that if we feel destroyed, damaged and hurt today, this is not a problem. If we relax into our experience, withdraw into ourselves and nurture ourselves for a while, we will be reborn again when we are ready, soft, flexible & different, stronger & more vibrant than that which we were previously.

We can use hardness as a shell when we need to, but if we want to really express the depths of our soul in our life as we are leading it from day to day, we need to discover the strength that comes from the softness of mud and blood.

Related Articles:
The Resilience of Gentleness
A Butterfly in the Wind

© 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 

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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,



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

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

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