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Falling Water

A Meditation

Meditation is the pathway by which we bring unity between the conscious and subconscious parts of the mind. This practice can be done several ways, but I have found one way to be the most beneficial to me. It is not an easy meditation to do successfully, but even an incomplete attempt is thoroughly refreshing, physically and mentally.

To begin this meditation, one must be in the shower. If you are blessed enough to live near a waterfall and wish to do this meditation there, I encourage it, however, most of us do not have such luxury. Go about your normal routine of cleaning your body, because once you are done, you will be sitting in the tub or on the floor of your shower. Position the shower head as best you can to rain down on your head squarely, then have a seat. Place your legs however they feel the most comfortable, and close your eyes. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth, shifting however you need to in order to be sure you will not breathe in the water streaming down your face.

The next step seems a bit counterproductive, and if you are just beginning into the practice of meditation, feel free to omit it. I personally turn the water temperature down to where the water is just a few degrees cooler than what I feel is comfortable. It makes the practice more difficult, thus requiring a greater focus to achieve the proper meditative state.

Once you are seated, and ready to begin, your first point of focus is to feel the water as it runs down your face, your chest, your neck, and your back. Experience the path of the falling water. Become not just aware of it, but become one with it. If you have shifted your water temperature, this will make the practice momentarily more uncomfortable. Push aside the discomfort, and just accept your circumstances as they are. This is the first stage and is actually quite physically refreshing.

The second stage is to collapse your feeling of the water. Draw your sense of self inward, so that you no longer feel the water flowing down your back, or the sensation of water on your face. Just pull yourself inward, making your sense of self very small, centered in the tanden, one's physical and energetic center. This is the second level of this meditation and is meant to train the mind to function without the input of the body. Now, all you feel is your innermost energetic self.

The final stage of this technique is to continue the practice of collapsing. Make your sense of self smaller and smaller, until it feels like your entire being is smaller than a grain of sand. Then, collapse it again, and again, until you can no longer feel your sense of self. In doing this, you are removing your consciousness from your physical shell. This is where the real benefit of this exercise comes in.

The first time I succeeded in my goal of total removal of self, it seemed as if my sense of self had been super-compressed until it exploded outward, infinitely in all directions. This was not a planned visualization, and only in hindsight did I compare this to the theoretical beginning of the universe, the Big Bang. I felt infinite, and invisible at the same time. I gained an understanding of how minute we all are as individual beings, yet the interconnectedness of all life, all things being made of the same debris from the same explosion at the beginning of all things.

Once I reached this point, I sat there for a time, lost in this sense of grandeur and understanding. It was hard for me to collect my thoughts enough to remember what I was doing in that moment. To draw myself back to my body, I always pick a sense to focus on. I prefer to feel for the water running down my face. Others I have taught this to have focused on the sound of the falling water, or the smell of the soap they used prior to the meditation.

Even once fully lucid again, I did not feel the same. Once I got out of the shower and toweled off, I always look in the mirror, but never see myself looking back. The body I experience this life through is always the same, but having just touched the infinity of the soul within the body, the reflection always looks foreign. The only thing that looked right was the depth of the eyes, each time changed by the experience. They are all that feels like it is really me, but they are never the same eyes I went into the shower with. They no longer hold the cloud of stress from the day or worry over some imaginary problem that I have taken for too closely to heart. They are sharp and clear.

Empty and Infinite.

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