Here are a few of our favorite Big Ideas + Other Cool Stuff from Week 4 of Scott Schwenk's 4-week course Effortless Meditation: Level 1
Scott Schwenk is a healer, teacher, writer, visionary, and leader focused on bringing out the highest expression in all his clients and projects with efficiency, humor, and grace. Scott is deeply gifted in reaching beyond the noise and chaos that his clients may be experiencing and helping them discover and heal the core issues blocking deeper experiences of love and happiness within, restoring flow to every area of their lives. Under the precise guidance of Sri Svami Purna Maharaj, the impact and reach of Scott's work deepens with every breath.
Big Idea #1: The Gunas
Despite their name, the Gunas are not the henchmen of some kind of super-villain. They are three energies which constantly cycle through our being.
The first one is Tamas Guna. This is a heavy, lethargic energy. While it’s ascendant, there’s not a lot of interest in spiritual practice. We want to stay in bed and our attitude is heavy. Everyone in a human body experiences this at some point.
Rajas Guna is the Guna of activity. It wants to do, to act, to create. It is associated with spicy food and things like caffeine that get us going.
The third Guna is Sattva Guna. This is a pure energy and when it’s dominant, we long for spiritual practice. We seek out books that lead us to deeper understanding. We yearn for nature and a deeper connection with the natural world.
We cycle through these states all the time, but we can use the power of our will to engage in the activities we’ve committed to, no matter what Guna is strongest.
Big Idea #2: The Power of Mantra
A set of words known as a mantra is a vehicle that delivers you to the truth. When used during meditation, it can deliver you to more spacious realms within your own self. Working with mantra, you will actually sense your consciousness expanding and experience greater states of ease.
Our intention is important when working with mantra. One set of ancient teachings says that the secret essence of mantra is establishment in the body of the knowledge of oneness. This means that, if we want the mantra we use to have the greatest possible effect, we need to remember that all things, in their essence, are One, that we are all just God in drag.
As you practice with mantra, remember that it will bear its full fruit when you come to understand that the energy of the mantra, your own true nature and Supreme Reality (AKA God) are all one and the same.
Big Idea #3: Surrender
Surrender is extremely powerful as a spiritual practice. In many ways, spiritual surrender is like an amazing love-making experience.
In meditation, you have your point of focus, be it your body, a mantra or your breath. You pay attention to it just the way you would pay attention to a part of your partner’s body, say an ear you’re nibbling on. When making love, in addition to that one part of your partner’s body, you’re cultivating a sense of spaciousness of the entire situation, of everything that’s going on with them.
In the same way, when we meditate, in addition to the point of focus, we allow for our awareness to be spacious and to hold within it the texture of our thoughts, the sensations of our body and the play of our emotions.
There is a spiritual energy within us that holds the supreme intelligence of what we need at any given time. We use our point of focus to tune into that energy, and at the same time we open ourselves up to being led through our practice. We scan our body, looking for areas to relax, as well as our mind, where we seek tight spots to let go of.
The areas you want to give some awareness to become very clear as your practice deepens. But, if at any point it seems like you are trying to pay attention to too much, just return to the body and the breath, inhaling deeply.
Other Fun Stuff:
If you want to write up your experience of the course and send it to Scott so he can see what you’re ready for next – send it to him at Scott@trustthebreath.com!
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We hope you enjoyed this course!
-the en*theos Team