HOW TO DOZE

Phase One

I repeat: "This essay is not about broadband sensing. This is about the internal body sense, this is another dimension of empathising with animals."

And I repeat: "Humans have developed thousands of meditations with our kinaesthetic sense, autogenic training, and the internal awareness of our own body. Our sub-culture is rich in such exercises. To my knowledge, they are all effective ways of re-energising, real-ising yourself, and finding some peace, balance, and happiness.

"Our sub-cultures body awareness exercises prioritise the sense of touch, and even how breathing feels with the sense of touch. But an animals sense of their world is experienced and understood not only by touching, but also by smelling, tasting, listening, and seeing. And i believe their inner body sense is also understood in terms of all these senses."

It is practical first to learn the conventional approach to body meditation, i will add the inner senses throughout the following essays.

If you already have an effective method to contain your thoughts and relax your body and mind, the following exercises will be largely irrelevant for you. I'd like to summarise a few ideas based on conventional methods for complete beginners.

There are many questions about inner body sensation which i would like children to clarify. What can they feel without any scientific knowledge? What is the natural approach to body awareness?

Dozing: Body and Breathing Awareness

This essay is necessary because we have forgotten how to doze. The problem is, when humans doze we slumber and daydream and get lost in abstract thinking – we have lost the feel for just being. Other people may have far better ideas. My intention here is to make a few simple suggestions, as a basis.

This is not like broadband sensing. Broadbanding is something which you can do for just half a minute and it will be effective. But, every animal needs a minute or so before they can settle down and doze. To find any depth, humans need to doze for at least 10 minutes at a time.

Preparation

I'd like you to start with a minute of broadband seeing and listening. Like any wise animal: check the surroundings before settling down for a doze. Then, it's probably easier at first, to close the eyes.

Check through your outer body, where it's touching the floor and the chair, your clothes, and the air on your face and hair. Are you comfortable?

The 'Breath-Body'

The basis for this meditation is whole body breathing. Let's call it the 'breath-body' to distinguish how the breath feels from the inside – to how the body feels (and looks) from the outside.

Notice how you're breathing in and out. Feel your body getting bigger and smaller. Feel the breath-body. Recently, i would describe the feeling as filling up and emptying out. I find 'filling up and emptying out', or 'expanding and contracting', are both good and simple ways to feel whole inside my body.

If you can do this just for ten minutes, then that would be amazing. Most people, myself included, will start to daydream. So let's give the thoughts some sort of stability.

I often use a form of prayer or mantra and build it into the basic sequence. And this pacifies the thoughts for a while. However, looking at it from the perspective of inner psychology, and techniques, conventional meditation methods often use counting with the breaths.

Counting with Breaths

This uses the breathing as a counting measure, and focuses on a sequence of parts in the body. One breath at each focal point gives us a slow rhythm with enough movement to be interesting. It gives us something slow and peaceful to do. It's practical.

When i was young i picked up the idea of "conscious i breathe in, letting go i breathe out". I still find this a very useful meditation idea. There are various ways to combine the breathing with 'being conscious and letting go'. And though it may seem ideal to be conscious and let go at the same time, it is effective to separate the two steps.

Go through your whole body, step by step - feet, knees, hips; shoulders, elbows, hands; bowels, stomach (diaphragm), lower chest, upper chest; neck, face, head; - at each step thinking "conscious of my feet i breath in, letting go of my feet i breathe out" etc..

Don't worry if your breathing becomes unsteady as you let it go. This is just your lower brain allowing your body to adjust to what it needs and wants, instead of being controlled by your routine habits.

I often start a meditation by counting through my fingers. Conscious of and letting go of each finger – from the little fingers to the thumbs – both sides at the same time – then i count through my toes. If i can't actually feel the second and middle toe, i imagine them, i know they're there, so i count them anyway.

Then come back to the whole breath-body, filling up and emptying out, expanding and contracting.

Then, even without reading the essays on taste and smell, you could do a rudimentary exercise: counting one breath each, being aware of: light, sounds, smells, tastes, and then the touch of your inside body again.

Then always between each sequence, a few breaths with the whole breath-body, expanding and contracting.

Imagination

The experience and success of whole body breathing depends on if you are in any way physically restricted or stiff (e.g. through injury) or emotionally blocked with stress and tension. 'Being conscious and letting go' can be focused on any body stiffness as a natural healing technique, at the least as an inner massage. Use your imagination in any way you want to heal stiffness ...

Extra Body Breath Exercises develops all these ideas.
Please continue with Listening Inside and Seeing with Closed Eyes

Back to Chapter Three