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In the eight fold path of yoga meditation is the e Essay

ighth step (Smith, 11). Once herea Yogi must become more aware and more sensitive to what is within themselves
(Meditation). A Yogi must first lose themselves here to find peace with themselves
(Smith, 11). The armor that a person has built around themselves throughout their lives
must be lost and they have to see themselves clearly (Smith, 19).

Meditation begins with concentration (Meditation). In concentration meditation a
Yogi must focus all their energy onto one thing. Such as an object (a candle flame), a
sensation (something felt while walking), or an emotion (love) (Chakras and
Meditation). At first it might be hard to keep mind focused on one object. A person
must train themselves to concentrate. Narrow the mind on to one category of objects.
Then focus onto one of the objects. When the mind begins to wonder, go to another
object in the category. When it becomes easy to focus on one object for a long time then a
Yogi is ready to move on to concentrate on one single object (Lidell, 94).

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Chakra meditation falls under concentration meditation. There are seven major
chakras along the spin. They start at the base of the spine and go up to the top of the head.
The seven major chakras are connected by three major nadies. Sushumna, the middle
nadi, has neutral characteristics. Nearest your left hand is the ida nadi. It has yin
characteristics. The third nearest your right hand is pingala nadi. It has yang qualities
(Chakras and Meditation). Through these nadis the chakras are connected and energy
passes from one to another.

Each chakra is said to be an energy transformer (Chakras and Meditation).
When a chakra is activated or meditated on, it releases a unique type of energy. This
energy is measurable and immeasurable. The measurable energy is electromagnetic energy
and light photons. The immeasurable energy is called prana. Prana is the vital, essential
energy of the universe (Smith, 231-233). The chakras are the centers in the body were
this energy is activated and stored (Smith, 231-233).


For the chakras to be activated properly it depends on the sitting position. During
meditation a Yogi should sit Indian style, with their legs crossed. One heel should be in
front of the pelvis bone and the other in front of the first heel. The knees spread as far
apart as possible and rested on the floor. This sitting position will provide a stable base.
The neck and spine will be straight. Breathing will also be easier because the chest cavity is
open. This will also help with concentrating and will promote clearer thinking (Smith,
224-225).

Chakra meditation is very simple and easy to do. A yogi simply concentrates on
each chakra starting with the root chakra traveling up the shushumna and activating the
next higher chakra (Chakra and Meditation). It may take weeks or months to move from
one chakra to the next. It is a very long process.

The seven main chakras are muladhara, swadishthana, manipura, anahata,
vishuddha, ajnal and sahasrara. The chakras are located along the ethereal counterpart of
the spinal cord and cannot be seen through normal vision (Smith, 231-233). To bring the
body to a state of rest a Yogi must focus their attention to the processes of breathing, the
heartbeat, and the flow of electromagnetic energy. Then the prana will begin to move up
the Sushumna awakening the higher chakras.

This awakening must start with the first chakra muladhara. This is the root or base
chakra. It is located at the base of the spine (Chakras and Meditation). Each chakra is
thought of as a lotus flower that has a color and a number of petals. This chakra is a
yellow lotus with four petals. The main element of this chakra is the earth and survival
(Lidell, 71). This chakra deals with the survival of ones self. The Yogi should think of
physical survival mainly, food, shelter, and the need for self preservation.

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When meditating one should be totally away from the rest of the world. At this
level everything is solid and concrete. At this level viewing is that …each person is an
individual who must look out for himself” (Smith, 233). At this level of reality a Yogi must
achieve success on the material plain. It’s not possible to go any further until food, clothing,
shelter and transportation have all been taken care of (Smith, 233). After all of this has
been achieved on can move onto the next chakra, swadishthana.

Swadishthana is the second chakra. It is located above and behind the genitals. It
is a sexual chakra (Chakras and meditation). This lotus is white and has six petals. Its
element is water. This chakra has a principle of …if a little is good, then a lot more is
better (Smith, 233).

This chakra tends to trap people in it. Here a Yogi can indulge in food, drink,
drugs, sex, parties, gambling and other stimulating activities. One desire leads to another
and there is no end. A person may stay here for most of their life. The only way the
spiral of indulgences can be broken is if ones higher nature overcomes the lower nature
indulgences. The rational mind can overrule certain impulses. The only way to truly rise
above this chakra level is to say no to many of the lower nature indulgences (Smith, 233).
Meditation helps to give us this power to say no. It is easy to let go of earthly wine when
we begin to taste divine wine (Smith, 233). To get to the next chakra, manipura, the Yogi
must be able to stop the cravings for the lower nature enjoyments.

The third chakra, manipura, is also called the solar plexus. This chakra is located
by the navel (Chakras and Meditation). This lotus is red and has ten petals. Its element
is fire (Lidell, 71). At this chakra a Yogi will identify their ego, rational mind, personal
emotions and personality structure. When trapped in this chakra a person might never be
able to get quite enough power. They might lose friendships to advance at work and this is
when political backbiting takes hold (Smith, 233-235).

At this level a person must deal with their emotions. In yoga and meditation it is
very simple and easy to deal with emotions. During an emotional time or while thinking of
something emotional, regulating the breathing will help a lot. To do this first inhale for a
count of three and hold for a few seconds. Then exhale for a count of three. While doing
this the inhaling and exhaling should be smooth from beginning to end. This will be
helpful for the emotions. The only way to overcome the prison of an ego-personality is to
move on to the higher chakra levels (Smith, 233-235).

The fourth chakra is anahata. This chakra is located over the heart (Chakras and
Meditation). This chakras lotus us a smoke color and has twelve petals. Its element is air
(Lidell, 71). At this level it is said that a persons heart is totally open. Here the prana and
electromagnetic energy move into the heart center. This is were a person begins to think
about brotherhood. When a person is here the word to characterize them is compassionate
(Smith, 235-236).

To feel the peacefulness of this chakra it is easier to be in deep meditation than out
in the world. Here a person realizes that physical distance is not a barrier between two
people. This is because …neither consciousness nor love has boundaries (Smith,
235-236). Once a person realizes this, then while they are deeply in meditation they can
send pure love vibrations to acquaintances and friends. A Yogi can send out light and love
through the entire universe.

Also at this level a Yogi should try to help others and share their light and love.
The person whose heart center is open should stand as a wellspring of light, love and truth
for the higher nature of others to feed from (Smith, 2335-236).

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Vishuddha is the fifth chakra. This chakra is located at the base of the throat
(Chakras and Meditation). This lotus is sea blue and has sixteen petals. Its element is
ether (Lidell, 71). This chakra is where the creative mind dwells.
This is the level that poets, artists, and philosophers are at when they create. Here a
person will not strive to get the praise of others. They are driven by a force deep inside
and it doesn’t matter to them if their work is ever noticed (Smith, 236-237). At this level a
person is …not vulnerable to the powerplay of another persons ego as at the fourth level
(Smith, 236-237). Here a person acts spontaneously, creatively and with vision.

Ajna the sixth chakra is the frontal chakra. This chakra is known as the third eye.
It is between and slightly above the eyebrows (Chakras and meditation). This lotus is
white with two petals. This is the seat of the mind (Lidell, 71).

Ajna is the center of pure intelligence. This is were a Yogi understands all of the
lower levels of reality at once. Here is were the full picture of reality is seen. This is done
with the third eye. This eye is thought of as an organ of perception. It gives off a beam of
light . This beam cannot be seen or measured except by another with the third eye. This
eye gives the person the power to see qualities behind appearances.

Also here …the separations and boundaries that have been constructed by man are
seen as illusionary (Smith, 237). A cosmic stream of intelligence and understanding are
brought into notice and it is realized that everyone is in an ocean moving together (Smith,
237). To find out what this ocean is the next level must be activated.

Sahasrara is the seventh and final chakra. It is the crown chakra and is located on
the top of the head (Chakras and Meditation). This is the thousand petal lotus. This
lotus has no color of its own. This chakra corresponds to absoluteness. This is were a
Yogi attains samadhi or superconciousness (Lidell, 71). The goal of a Yogi during
meditation is to gain this superconciousness.

Sahasrara is the center of pure spirit. The question Who am I? is answered
through the crown chakra as: I am a wave of infinite bliss (Smith, 237-238). To a Yogi
no further explanation is desired or needed.

Added by this chakra is the feeling of eternal peace. This is the end of the souls
quest but the beginning of a new mission. This is when a Yogi will start to help other
souls seeking the light of truth. To do this they have to go below the seventh chakra, but
no lower than the fourth chakra. The duty in sewing others is to communicate with them
at their highest level of understanding, not your own. We must speak the language that is
understood by others (Smith, 237-238).

Meditation in the higher stages allows a person to view life from an advantage
point. In these higher stages life is viewed as unified and perfect. To most people life
appears disorganized and imperfect. Throughout the day everybody passes in and out of
different chakra levels. Most people have a chakra center that they reside in most often
during the day. Most people spend their lives in the first, second and third chakra levels.
Some however are lucky enough to pass on even further and their lives benefit greatly from
it (Smith, 232-233).




Bibliography
1.Chakras and Meditation. http://www.wicca.com/celtic/chakra.htm. March 21,
1998.

2.Lidell, Lucy, et.al. The Sivananda Companion to Yoga. New York: Simon &
Schruster, Inc., 1983.

3.Meditation. http://www.salemctr.com/newage/center6.html. March 21, 1998.

4.Smith, Bob, et.al. Yoga For a New Age. Seattle, Washington: Smith Productions,
1986.

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ighth step (Smith, 11). Once herea Yogi must become more aware and more sensitive to what is within themselves
(Meditation). A Yogi must first lose themselves here to find peace with themselves
(Smith, 11). The armor that a person has built around themselves throughout their lives
must be lost and they have to see themselves clearly (Smith, 19).

Meditation begins with concentration (Meditation). In concentration meditation a
Yogi must focus all their energy onto one thing. S

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