Tuesday, August 14, 2018

7 Christian Meditation Techniques

I think Christians have lost the art of meditation - far too many in the churches all over the world have been infected by a Western mindset steeped in the perceived supremacy of the intellect.  But the Holy Scriptures of the Bible, all the prophets of old, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Elijah, John, the Disciples and Yeshua/Jesus Himself are all of the East! This does not mean there is no room for the intellect and rationale thought or that I am dismissing logic - far, far, far be it from to do that. The rational mindset of the West should be embraced in perfect harmony with the mysticism and spiritual orientation of the East - the two are married, two sides of the one coin and are therefore, one.

Photo by Ian Stauffer on Unsplash. Modified by DR.
So meditation is not something you need to be afraid of. And now that I've discovered it and explored it from a very firm, Biblical, Christ-centered, Spirit-led rooting - I wonder how I even prayed before! It's such a powerful form of prayer that I have to share it. I have borrowed heavily from Eastern mysticism (but perhaps not so deeply) and have argued elsewhere that meditation is a very ancient and Biblical practice (click here to see that). To be clear, this is not a religious formula (a quick glance at what I've written and you'll realize I'm not fond of religion nor it's formulas). And to state the obvious, I utterly believe in the One God - Elohim/Yahowah/El-Shaddai who so loved the World that He offered up His Only Begotten Son (John 3:16). So what I have here are merely guidelines and frameworks. So without further ado, let's dive in!

1) Chanting the AUM

Om or Aum is an ancient Sanskrit syllable (I've written here about  how it is in fact a representation of Jesus). I knew of Aum from my teenage years when I once visited Nepal. Shortly after I discovered Jesus and was led by the legalistic thinking circles that I was immediately exposed to, I was encouraged to discard anything that hinted of Eastern mysticism or spirituality (I foolishly complied). But Jesus Himself reintroduced me to the Aum a whopping 22 years later (you can see how I stumbled supernaturally on this here and here and here; yeah it was such a powerful vision that it took me at least three times to expound on it on this blog).

Aum is akin to the OM of Shalom and the AM of Amen - in the Bible we see that Jesus Himself is the Amen (Rev 3:14)! So do not be afraid to utter this syllable - a syllable that rolls from the tip of the mouth to the throat and vibrates from the belly upwards to the neck as you speak, a syllable that is said without the use of the tongue so that anyone can utter it. 

I use the Aum to focus and be still. When I utter Aum, or even think it, it stills my thoughts - it does not shut off my mind but it quiets the endless mind chatter, in fact I could say that it resets the mind. Think of a pond of water that is so agitated... just chanting Aum (for me at least) quiets that wavy pond so it becomes perfectly calm and clear. I weave the Aum in and out of prayer, sometimes I'll also say Shalom and  other times, Amen too.

I also believe Aum is related to the Hebrew word for "says" or "speak" - A-M-R pronounced Amer. Thought, just like words that one says, are essentially vibrations (we already know about brain waves and there's some technologies that have been developed where you can 'teach' a device what you think and these 'thought reading' machines essentially read those vibrations). "In the beginning was the Word"... essentially is "In the beginning was the Vibration"... and "And God said [AMER - like Aum], Let their be Light and there was Light." So chanting the Aum is chanting the Word and the very Vibration/Thought of calling forth what is not in existence into existence! (but this subject easily deserves a post on its own).

2) The Cross

The Cross is everything. Meditating on the Cross, on how Jesus laid down His life for us and the so-called Passion of Christ, on how God sent His Son in love to the world to die in such shame, pain and horror... well, simply put, there is no deed or discovery that is greater than JESUS CRUCIFIED. None what so ever! 

Now this concept is foreign to those of the East. The Eastern Mystics have understood a lot, or perhaps I should say instead; Eastern Mystics have remembered  many essential truths that were forgotten by the peoples of the Book. But the Cross - Jesus in the flesh,  crucified and risen from the dead - as a physical, spiritual and eternal truth is forgotten by the Eastern Mystics. The Eastern Mystics know that God is love and love is God but they think so impersonally of Him (calling the Father, the Universe or by Names that rob God of His personal love to us). In failing to see the Word (which, I remind you, is Aum) becoming flesh and dying on the Cross, they fail to see the greatest conceivable manifestation of God's love possible. 

The mystery of the Cross is so deep. It is not trivial in any way and meditating on it, you meditate on everything. Why did the Father send the Son to die on a cross? I don't really know why it had to be. And many will be so quick to say their well-tried answers borne from doctrine and intellectual faith. Yes, Jesus the Lamb was sacrificed to sanctify us and usher us into a beautiful, eternal New Covenant that can not be broken anymore by our human condition, but that said... why does it have to be that way? It is beyond me and yet I frequently center my mind on the Cross because what better thing is their to think on?

 Are you in debt? Think on the Cross. Are you in love? Think on the Cross. Are you rich or poor? Think on the Cross. Are you in a storm of life? Think on the Cross. Are you in longing? Think on the Cross. Whatever your condition is now - think on the Cross! There is something so timeless about the Cross - everyday think on the Cross and somehow your life will align with great power to God's will and kingdom. 
But the ultimate reason I think on the Cross is because the highest, most infinite and ever-lasting expression of God's total, unwavering, limitless love for me (and you too, but I say me, so you can say me too and make it as personal as possible!) is Jesus Crucified! Amen.

3) The I AM meditation

I have a written a lot recently about the Mystery of the I AM. God's Name. Yet it is God's Name in your mouth that great power is given, for our Father is not one that should keep us in the mud and mire for us to worship Him as slaves, but He is our Daddy Father, who loves us and raises us up as sons and daughters. Jesus taught us to pray "Hallowed be Your Name" and right afterwards "Your Kingdom Come" for a great reason. 

When you consecrate the I AM being careful to not to take it in vain by saying negative things after the I AM, the KINGDOM COMES for the Kingdom, as Jesus said, is within us! When God told Moses what to tell the Israelites should they ask him about God's Name (they never did ask in the end) God said "tell them that the I AM sent me unto you", you see, that was a great secret that empowers people to break free from slavery and the tyranny of the world's spiritual darkness. 

So first utter I AM and think on this. You are! Meditating on the I AM roots your presence. You become self-aware. I AM. It is very empowering. You know those people who blame external things beyond their control for their life's conditions? They are very powerless and poor in their minds, they are victims and constantly sighing out life. Are you one of those souls? Then take up the I AM and Resurrect His Life in you. 

The second thing you can say and meditate on is the I AM that I AM. Think on what Paul said I am what I am by the Grace of God. Think on your unity with God, Jesus is the Vine you are the Branch.  I AM One with the Father, One with the Son, One with the Spirit.

In pondering the I AM - one anchors their thoughts in the now, in the moment. How many of us are distracted nowadays, constantly wanting to fill our mind with endless, useless chatterings - what one does when they get on Facebook, scrolling through their home feed, they get a surge of dopamine in the first few minutes and then they just get stuck in a trance like state. We are becoming a generation that has been freed from so much hard labor and disease and have never lived longer since the old Biblical days but ironically now that we have more time we find ourselves so disconnected from the very awareness of our existence.

Uttering I AM a few times will do wonders in this regard.

4) Focus on your breathe and take control

This is very related to the preceding I AM meditation. Essentially, it is just being aware. Saying nothing, just focus on your breath as you inhale and exhale. You can close your eyes and focus on everything you are hearing, feeling (the way you sit, being aware of your body parts in what position they maybe in, or what sensations are pulsating that you have not yet noticed, etc), what you are smelling or tasting.. you can also do this anytime, standing or walking with eyes wide open. Just focus on your breath for a few minutes.

Focusing on the breathe makes you amazingly aware of everything going on around but also in you. I have found that doing this even in stressful situations, I begin to look at my feelings objectively - "Oh, I realize I am angry now" and suddenly that emotion no longer becomes the driver of my actions. Suddenly, I now am in a position to respond and initiate, to be proactive rather than allowing my emotions and outside happenings to dictate my reactions.

The Bible says we are Temples of the Holy Spirit of God. This is perhaps one of the most profound things Jesus Christ came to accomplish for us. For now, I just want to throw this out - the word Spirit in the Bible (both Hebrew and Greek) can just as correctly be translated as Breathe. Focusing on your Breathe is a way to focus on the Spirit of the Almighty in you. The Breathe in you is placed there by God Himself. How powerful is it then to just focus on this amazing part of our being.

As a final note, breathing is one of those bodily functions that is under both voluntary and involuntary control. It makes it even more interesting when you consider that fact.

For God has not given us a spirit [BREATHE] of timidity, but of power, love, and self-control. 2 Tim 1:7

5) God is Timeless and so are you

One of the wackiest things I've written so far is right here. Ever since I was awakened by Jesus to see visions, dreams and other prophetic rabbit hole journey's, I've had very, very strange experiences. One of them is some form of time travel - of course - I am not saying that I was no longer aware of my body and presence in this plane of existence. It was something deeply powerful, imaginative and as many visions and dreams are, extremely symbolic and somehow infused with the unmistakable aroma and flavor of Jesus.

But we are speaking about meditation - a very purposeful act of prayer (that can lead to visions, etc) but that is apart from it and involves a very intentional, focused activity of the mind and spirit. Here are a few powerful ways you can utilize this timelessness concept - firstly, recognizing that the Eternal One is the One "who was, who is and who is to come", in other words, God is the Timeless One and  you are a child of His, so that also transports you into His timeless realm.

Many people live in the past. And many others may not dwell on the past but they have hurts and wounds from things that have happened to them. (I would recommend this post and reading about unforgiveness). One exercise is to focus on a past event - relive it but instead of doing what you did, impulsively reacting to it or not acting with enough wisdom, choose to relive those moments in a way that you would do so today. This experience can act like a healing or soothing balm for those wounds of our past.

Another powerful little trip is to see yourself living out your day before it unfolds, early in the morning. It can bring focus and make sure you don't waste your time with fruitless activities. And yet another exercise is to travel further into the future, not to see what it becomes, but to imagine favorable outcomes.

As I said, this stuff is a little wacky but I am talking to those who want to do great things for their God's Kingdom, their family and in the world.

6) Chant a verse very slowly

Take a powerful verse of Scripture and just slowly repeat it. Focus on each word, each utterance. There is great and profound lessons to be draw from here. Yes, I purposely inserted this relatively commonplace practice because the next suggestion is easily as strange if not stranger than the previous one.

7) Travel in the Spirit

I have been places in the Spirit. These were strange, otherworldly places, possibly celestial or heavenly places. At first I was 'accompanied' by Seraphim like beings - so weird. At first I did not understand these travels but as I began to embrace them I accidentally discovered I could travel to places that I treasured deeply. I could travel not only in time but in a location. I'm not talking about something so out of this world it couldn't be Biblical... consider what Paul said to the Corinthian church:
When you are gathered in the name of our Lord Jesus and I am with you in spirit, along with the power of the Lord Jesus... 2 Cor 5:4
There was a serious situation in the Corinthian church that Paul spoke of but I won't go into here and this verse is immediately followed by another very controversial statement that I also won't address. But the truth of this particular verse above is flabbergasting and has confounded 'Western' minded Christians for centuries. What in the world is Paul talking about? This was not nonsensical, sentimental musings, Paul didn't write like that - it was real... when these believers gathered, he says he was literally there along with the power of the Lord Jesus. It was his intention that bought him there. I've never heard someone preaching about this, and only managed to find some vague mentions online among one or two Christians.

So rather than explain things away, I'd like to simply suggest you explore and experiment. While meditating I often imagine myself with the people that I am praying for. They could be in the room next door, or just a 20 minute drive away or on other continents - it does not matter. In the spirit, I lay hands on them, bless them, pray or just simply linger there, worshiping the Lord and enveloping the environment with His love.

Sometimes I'll just 'fly' to places I love, and just sit there and pray and watch what goes on. New Agers will call this remote viewing... they may also call it astral projection. They could very well be those things but it makes little difference to me. Afterall, Jesus often expounded on spiritual principles that could be applied by anybody. Most Christians would outright reject anything of this sort because they think it's kind of like what Saul did when he summoned the prophet Samuel from the dead, using the services of a diviner.

But as the verse above explains (and by the way, I did not even mention Philip's little trips in Acts) there is a Biblical precedent for this. And besides, so what if people Christians have maligned for so long have discovered cool spiritual principles? So what? How bigoted it is to think that Jesus keeps those who do not yet know Him from truth wherever it may be found! Also, how is it that these judgmental Christians have taken so presumptuously the position of judge of the world, they now dictate who belongs to Jesus and who doesn't, who is saved and who is isn't, and all this nonesense? The last I checked nobody owns God! 

So let them do what they do and who knows, what if they worship God in Spirit and Truth, embrace His mercy from the Sacrifice of His Son on the Cross, but have not yet realized they do? Whose to say that is not possible? I say this all to make you fearless and more open minded. God is always in the business of destroying our intellectual castles of sand and replacing them with temples of wonderfully carved natural and precious stones. Jesus Himself, is the precious CornerStone and we are the Stones of that Temple as well!

I hope this post gives you ideas and that you find a great sense of Peace and blessing through these 'new' ways of prayer.

Here's to your happy experience in meditation, well-ground and rooted firmly in the Faith of the Amen, Jesus Christ, who came in the flesh, of the line of David, the I AM SALVATION Himself and who died and rose again after three days. Amen.

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