Category: Meditation & Mindfulness

Nine Purification Breaths

This is an excerpt from the book “Tibetan Yogas of Dream and Sleep” by Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche that we liked very much because it is a very clear and practical explanation of the Nine Purification Breaths. Hopefully, you will find it useful too:

Perhaps you have noticed how much tension is carried in the body and how the tension affects breathing. When someone with whom we are having difficulties walks into the room, the body tightens and the breath becomes shorter and sharper. When we are frightened, the breath comes quick and shallow. In sadness, the breathing is often deep and punctuated by sighs. And if someone we genuinely like and care for enters the room, the body relaxes and the breath opens and eases.

Rather than waiting for experience to alter the breath, we can deliberately alter the breath to change our experience. The nine breaths of purification is a short practice to clear and purify the channels and relax the mind and body. (The drawings of the channels can be found on page 47 of this book.)

Sit in a cross-legged meditation posture. Place your hands palm-up in your lap, with the left hand resting on the right. Bend your head just a little to straighten the neck.

Visualize the three channels of energy in your body. The central channel is blue and rises straight through the center of the body; it is the size of a cane, and widens slightly from the heart to its opening at the crown of the head. The side channels are the diameter of pencils and join the central channel at its base, about four inches below the navel. They rise straight through the body to either side of the central channel, curve around under the skull, pass down behind the eyes, and open at the nostrils. In women the right channel is red and the left is white. In men the right channel is white and the left is red.

First Three Breaths

Men: Raise the right hand with the thumb pressing the base of the ring finger. Closing the right nostril with the ring finger, inhale green light through the left nostril. Then, closing the left nostril with the right ring finger, exhale completely through the right nostril. Repeat this for three inhalations and exhalations.

Women: Raise the left hand with the thumb pressing the base of the ring finger Closing the left nostril with the ring finger, inhale green light through the right nostril. Then, closing the right nostril with the ring finger, exhale completely through the left nostril. Repeat this for three inhalations and exhalations. With each exhalation, imagine all obstacles linked with male potencies expelled from the white channel in the form of light-blue air. These include illnesses associated with the winds (pranas) as well as obstacles and obscurations connected with the past.

Second Three Breaths

Men and Women: Change hands and nostrils and repeat for three inhalations and exhalations. With each exhalation, imagine all obstacles linked with female potencies expelled from the red channel in the form of light-pink air. These include illnesses associated with bile as well as obstacles and obscurations associated with the future.

Third Three Breaths

Men and Women: Place the left hand on top of the right in the lap, palms up. Inhale green healing light into both nostrils. Visualize it moving down the side channels to the juncture with the main channel, four finger widths below the navel. With the exhalation, visualize the energy rising up the central channel and out the top of the head. Complete three inhalations and exhalations. With each exhalation, imagine all potencies for illnesses associated with hostile spirits expelled from the top of the head in the form of black smoke. These include illnesses associated with phlegm as well as obstacles and obscurations associated with the present.

From the book Tibetan Yogas of Dream and Sleep

Photo credits: john mcsporran

Filed under: Blog Posts, Meditation & Mindfulness

Simple Slow Down Meditation Technique

This is a very simple meditation. Everyone can do it.

In fact, it doesn’t seem like meditation at all. But it works. It works very well.

Here’s the thing.

We are always in a hurry. We always rush to catch the next thing in the future. Whatever that thing might be. A TV show, a meeting, a computer game, a romantic rendezvous, you name it.

By when we do that, we forget to live our life. Because, we can live our life if we are at the ONLY time and in the ONLY place where life is happening:

Here and Now.

And if we are in a hurry, we miss that place and time altogether.

Introducing the One-third-speed Meditation

This meditation can be referred to as “One-third-speed Meditation“.

It can help you to reestablish your connection with the Here and Now.

I gave it a name “One-Third-Speed Meditation” because it is very descriptive and fully grasps the essence of the practice.

That is, it requires of you to slow down everything you do to one third of your normal speed.

Let me give you an example.

Let’s say you are washing dishes. The way I normally do that is very fast.

Why? Because I want to finish the task as soon as possible. After all, who likes to wash dishes? So, the sooner I’m done, the sooner I will be free to do other things.

But, that’s not the best approach. The main reason is it puts you in a mental state of hurry.

At the end of the day, the downside of putting you in a state of rush overweighs the benefit of being free to do other things.

Because, you program yourself to chase the next thing on your list, and when you catch it, guess what… there’s another one to chase.

So you are much better off if you break this mental state of constant rush!

And this meditation enables you to do so.

As I said, it is very simple, just reduce the speed of whatever you are doing to one third of what you are used to.

Resist the urge to do the job faster.

Whenever I manage to do that, as if by magic, my consciousness illuminates just a little bit more.

Instead of thinking about what next I am going to do, I start to be present in the here and now more and more and more and more.

The slower I go, the more present I am. I start to live in the present moment.

I don’t miss the here and now any more.

Let me propose something.

While you read these words, reduce the reading speed to one third of your normal reading speed when you surf the internet.

Right here and right now.

See what happens for yourself.

The Constant Flow of Thoughts.

Your thoughts are like a never-ending train passing by, taking you to whatever destination you dream about.

They never leave you out in the open, free and fully alive, conscious in the moment.

They can even be rather negative, in which case you should do everything you can to clear your mind of them.

However, if you do this meditation right, the train of thoughts starts to slow down. Or to put it differently, the thought cloud starts to clear up, even if a little bit. Normally, the cloud of thoughts follows you relentlessly everywhere you go.

But now, all of a sudden, you start to see through this cloud.

What you see is a glimpse of you clear consciousness beneath. A tiny millisecond of it. One precious glimpse after another, if you do this practice long enough.

There’s nothing more precious than that. Your essence shining through from within.

How to Do the One-third-speed Meditation

This one is no brainer. Choose a task and slow down to one third of your normal speed of execution.

Here are two examples:

Washing Dishes

Reduce the speed of washing. Observe how your hands are moving slowly. Observe the water flowing from the tap. Let your movement be gracious and continuous. Be present beside the sink as you enjoy doing the task at hand. Don’t project your mind into the immediate future, planning what you are going to do next.


You can do this meditation while eating your meals. Again, just reduce the speed at which you are normally consuming food. Chew slowly and make breaks between bites. Put down your fork every now and then. Relax. Enjoy the taste. Feel the nourishment as it makes your body stronger. Let your meal last 2 to 3 times longer than usual.

Advantages of One-third-speed Meditation

You Don’t Need a Special Time

While with some other meditation techniques you have to allocate special time to practice meditation (like, early in the morning, or before going to bed), here you don’t. Whenever you do some job, go run an errand, or perform a household task, there is an opportunity to practice.

You don’t need a special place

This is trivial as well. You don’t have to isolate yourself from your environment. You don’t need any special posture, special chair, special room, etc. Whatever you do can become your meditation.

Anyone can do it

Being a very simple form of meditation, in fact, hardly any meditation at all, everyone can do it. What can be more natural than slowing down and paying some attention to what you are currently doing.

Disadvantages of One-third-speed Meditation

You Won’t Go Too Deep

This is not really a disadvantage, but simply that”s how it works. Probably you won’t be able to concentrate and go deep into your inside. At least most of the time. That’s why I suggest having another form of meditation technique to complement this one. Another technique where you close your eyes and explore the depths of your inside world. My experience tells me that you can go much deeper into an altered states of consciousness if you close your eyes and direct the flow of consciousness inside. Therefore, learn another form of meditation alongside this one.

You Can Be Distracted Easily

At the beginning, you will find it that even a small distraction can take you out of your meditation. Either something or someone catches your attention, or you simply start thinking about something else and forget to go slow. If that happens, don’t beat up yourself. Simply go back to a slower pace once you become aware that you are out.

The Bottom Line

Believe it or not, whenever I manage to go slow, I also manage to do more.

If I rush, the end result is a series of rushed tasks that amount to very little or almost nothing. (They may even look big at the time you are doing them, but the end result is slim.)

It is a sort of paradox and a counter intuitive thing, but true nonetheless. It’s like the relationship between quality and quantity. Even a little bit of quality stuff is worth much more than a lot of stuff of no quality.

Your life is like that. If you don’t slow down it appears as if you are doing a lot of important things in your rushed day. But they amount to very little.

Slow down, and let your true presence, your true creativity come forward. It can only do that if you are conscious and focused. It can only do that if you are present, alive in the here and now, and if you don’t rush to catch the next thing on your agenda.

And enjoy.

Enjoy the movement of your body and the presence of your mind.

Enjoy in your being alive with this slow pace meditation technique.


Image Credit:

Courtesy of Brian Robinson

Filed under: Blog Posts, Meditation & Mindfulness

How to Achieve Enlightenment Through Meditation

“We need enlightenment, not just individually but collectively, to save the planet. We need to awaken ourselves. We need to practice mindfulness if we want to have a future, if we want to save ourselves and the planet.”~Thich Nhat Hanh

enlightenment-meditation-1Enlightenment through meditation? Is it possible? Yes!

Is it easy? No!

My lifelong mission has been to help as many people as I can to learn how to improve their life.

In particular, I’ve been teaching various meditation techniques, pranayamas, concentration, visualization and imagination methods, and invocation of higher Divine powers.

I’ve always been trying to help my students any way I can. Very often, they just need a little bit of encouragement, for example, to learn how set realistic goals in their spiritual life. But at the same time, I was always encouraging them to strive for the greatest goal of all…

Enlightenment… direct realization of the truth

Direct experience is the keyword here. Find out more about the importance of having direct experience in the Daniel Seeker’s book “The Door of Direct Experience”.

Why is achieving enlightenment so important?

Because, if you aim too low in your spiritual goals, you won’t get too far. I always advise my students to aim as high as possible. And the highest goal one can possibly set in one’s life is enlightenment.

There’s no higher goal than that. Period.

Enlightenment can be achieved in a number of different ways. I even believe, there are people who are enlightened naturally.

Meditation is just one of the tools for attaining enlightenment.

Of course, meditation has a number of other benefits, but if you ask me what’s the primary purpose of meditation is, without a doubt it’s achieving enlightenment.

Enlightenment has different levels and there are different types. For example, Nirvana could be considered one form of permanent enlightenment.

But here we won’t get too far discussing the levels of enlightenment. There’s no point discussing them. Because it might only satisfy your intellectual curiosity, but it won’t help you move forward even a little bit.

In addition, there’s no way to convey this ultimate experience by words, sound, images, or in any other way.

People ask me from time to time if you have to have a spiritual teacher or a guru to accomplish enlightenment. No you don’t. It might be easier to have someone to guide along the way, but in no way that’s a must.

That said, let’s see why a spiritual teacher is important:

  • In fact, enlightenment comes more as a Divine mercy, than as a result of your efforts. Your guru can help you receive Divine mercy more easily.
  • The other point is that your spiritual teacher can help you get rid of your ego. It’s very difficult to do that on your own. Because you don’t see your ego. Other people do, quite easily. Without breaking your ego, there’s no enlightenment. No way. The farthest you can go is getting spiritual insights, but not enlightenment.

If you are a beginner in meditation, you have to start somewhere. Here is a simple meditation instruction to get you going.

You can use this meditation every single day, and if you think it’s necessary you may even meditate several times a day. This technique is great to relax after a stressed day at work, whenever you are under pressure, or you find yourself in a frustrating situation.

  • Place a candle some 30 cm away and light it up. It should be leveled with your eyes.
  • Gaze at the flame (the blue part ideally) for 5 minutes. Try not to blink too much while gazing.

That’s it. It’s simple, but effective. In time, your body will be more and more in peace, and your mind will follow too.

After a while, when you have mastered this or other simple meditations types, you’ll want to move on. Here are some instructions and a description what awaits you on the more advanced levels:

  • Find a quiet room where you can be alone for a while. It is important not to be disturbed you something like 40 minutes.
  • Start by performing a pranayama exercise – which is another name for rhythmic breathing. There are many different ways you can breathe rhythmically. For example you can choose to breathe in for the count of 2, hold your breath for the count of 8, and breathe out for the count of 4. Repeat this cycle 10 times. Pranayama is a great exercise for accumulation of universal energy. The technical term is prana – vitalizing energy that will recharge your body, giving you new spiritual power. Check this post to get an idea about the different pranayama types.
  • Your pranayama should be followed by the practice of pratyahara. Pratyahara means to withdraw the senses from the outside world. Close your eyes and be conscious for several minutes. Do absolutely nothing. Observe. Observe the sensations in the body, hear the sounds around you, be conscious of the thoughts you have. But don’t interfere. Stay neutral. The final goal of this part is to achieve a state of being conscious without any thoughts. But it will take a lot of time until you manage to do so. Check this link for a complete guide on what pratyahara is and how to practice it.
  • If you do your pratyahara the right way, your senses will be turned inside, which will increase your awareness a great deal more. You will be in a position to reach the inner part of your Self – God in you. You would be able to feel the warm energy in your heart, feel the flame of love present there. That’s the energy of Divine love.
  • The next level is deep meditation. It’s where you become aware of the harmony of your heart, mind, and body. You feel devotion, you are able to contact the source of inspiration, and to open the possibility to achieve enlightenment.
  • The last part is the most difficult. You have to go through a wall, and there are no doors. Divine love is your real nature. When your consciousness perceives itself, it becomes pure. You get the full meaning of the words I AM, I ENDURE, I EXIST.

When meditation happens, what you feel and taste is love. Divine love. In this harmonious state you can BE in the state of Oneness with the Universe.



When you learn to be quite, when you’ve abandoned any aspirations of any kind, you can say that you are free, without limitations. Only if your mind has become unoccupied, you will experience the indescribable magnificence of the moment of enlightenment.

You will feel your connection with the endless pool of power, with the source of unlimited inspiration and knowledge.

So yes. Work every day on your spiritual development. Have positive thoughts. Cultivate peace and serenity in your everyday life.

Develop love for your spiritual practice. Develop love for your meditation.

Devote your efforts to God. Everyone can succeed. You just have to overcome your personal obstacles.

Different people have different obstacles. And with them, your spiritual teacher can help.

You don’t have to wait for him or her: when you are ready, your spiritual teacher will come.


Here is a simple infographic that condenses the main practical points in this article.

enlightenment meditation

Click here to download a free PFD version of the above infographic! No registration required.


Photo 1 credit:  Gwen’s River City Images

Photo 2 credit: Ian Burt

Filed under: Blog Posts, Meditation & Mindfulness