The second important practice is the right diet. The right diet enhances not only your meditation practices but your yoga practice and life generally. The right diet makes it easier for the mind to avoid becoming preoccupied with digestion and elimination. The right diet will help keep the nervous system calm We tend to avoid eating large meals two to three hours before meditation. I think that’s why meditation is much easier in the morning, as we don’t have to deal with the digestion of any heavy foods from our lunch or dinner. Yogis generally follow an Ayurvedic concept. Ayurveda characterizes foods into three groups: tamas, rajas, and sattva. The table shows eating a diet mainly of fresh fruits and veggies to promote a sattvic mind. A sattvic mind promotes purity of mind and peace. This state of mind is great for meditation. Rajasic foods, such as coffee, chicken, and eggs, overstimulate the mind and make it very hard to become still. Tamasic foods are red meat, alcohol, and refined sugar, which clouds our minds. Eating tamasic foods can make our minds lazy and dull; instead of focusing on meditation, we’ll fall asleep fast. It’s always great to observe our feelings and emotions and how they relate to what we eat. The next time you’re ready to meditate if it’s in the morning have a piece of fruit or a fresh green juice. If you choose to practice in the afternoon, try to have a fresh salad for lunch. There will be more guidance on how nutrition affects mental health in the next part of the blog.
MEDITATION DIET Photo Gallery
that promotes purity of mind, peace, intelligence, and right decisions.
that give us motivation. Food that keeps us attached to ego and creates desires.
that destroy our resistance and disease.
Besides the right time and the right diet, it is also good to know where the best place to meditate is. There is no right or wrong place to meditate. Throughout my years of meditation practices, I greatly enjoyed meditating several places both indoors and outdoors. Important aspects of the place are that it should be clean and comfortable, a place where you can be undisturbed and relaxed. If you’re practicing indoors, you can set up a small altar for your meditation practices. I have a meditation rug, a meditation pillow, and a small stand. On the stand, I keep photos of gurus and people who inspire or motivate me or whom I want to send healing vibes while practicing. I also have candles, incense, mala beads, and a journal placed around the altar. It’s a place where I am often drawn when I need peace and rejuvenation. Meditating outdoors can be a challenge if you’re living in the city. I always felt disturbed by people walking by in a park, but there was a time when a bee just couldn’t get enough of me. If we have the availability to meditate in nature, we should always go with that option. The earth, the air, and the breeze bring some extraordinary experiences to our mindfulness practices.
Lastly, selecting the right meditation technique will greatly help our meditation experience. Before deciding if meditation is the right thing for us, it is always advised to experience different types of meditations taught by different teachers. We’ll find that some meditation techniques focus on visualizations, others on mantras, and others on both. Many times, a great teacher provides guidance and information for our journey. There are two supportive meditation techniques which can be practiced together as a short meditation or as an introduction to another meditation technique.
The Resurrection Breath
The resurrection breath is practiced only once at the beginning of our practice. We close our eyes, take a deep breath in, and gently turn our heads to the left. Once our heads are facing to the left, we forcefully empty our lungs through the mouth with a double exhalation. It will sound like HAA, HAAA. The first exhalation is shorter and the second exhalation is longer, emptying any air left in the lower parts of the lungs. Next, we turn our heads back to center and start the meditation. This helps remove any tension left in our bodies before we start our meditation. On a subtle level, this breath technique symbolizes that we’re dying to the external world, and as we inhale we’re reborn to our inner world.