Learn to Meditate

Meditation Using Mindfulness Breathing

Stepwise practice of breathing and its awareness with respect to space, time, and count can allow a mindfulness exercise to mature into a steady meditation practice. Such a breathing practice yields into a control of subtle movement and subsequent pause of the vital energy, better known as pranayama by the Yogasutra literature. When this mindful breath of prāṇāyāma is mastered, mind regains the ability to be one-pointed and meditation takes hold. Such a spontaneous oncoming of a meditation practice is said to be neutral as in quintessential yoga free from ideology and beliefs. This approach requires no preconditions and is very suitable for beginners but is amenable for regular practitioners alike.

The teachings and the practice are based on Patanjali Yogasutra teaching of Chapter 2, sutra 50. There are three considerations, based on space, time and number. Practice based on time and number are introduced after the breath is observed properly, repeatedly with respect to space. Once each practice consideration, based on breath felt in space, measured in time, and counted in increasing numbers, is well practiced, then all three considerations are combined. When this combined practice takes hold, mindfulness is said to directly mature into an effortless meditation practice that is free from distraction. Moreover pranayama breathing technique is learnt correctly.


Meditation using Mindfulness Breathing with Space – 1

Experience this meditation that is free from ideology, guided by His Holiness Swami Vidyadhishananda. This bona-fide approach has been historically deemed very suitable to establish a daily meditation practice. This particular 12 step meditation is based on the first aspect of mindful breath felt by awareness of external and internal space.

The 12 steps of this practice are outlined below with a time counter. One should add the steps in the proper sequence shown, to one’s capacity. For example, practicing the first two steps for a month is a valid approach. The recommendation is to add the next step only when ready and then keep repeating as required. Thereafter add the following step, one at a time, and keep repeating until achieving distraction-free fluency. Those who have graduated from the beginner level may try the entire hour and let magic happen. Even the whole hour should be repeated daily to experience how mindfulness grips and meditation happens. The audio guidance is self-explanatory.

12-step meditation – may skip to or repeat step as you like:
00:00 – Ease into steady posture and centering

05:00 – Neuro-muscular relaxation and let go
14:00 – Breathing to remove emotional disturbance
18:30 – Feel breath on hands and then attenuate breath
21:30 – Watch breath in nostrils and repose in the midpoint of eyebrows
25:00 – Feel occiput between medulla and posterior fontanel
30:00 – Feel bregma and top of the head
34:00 – Feel movement sensation in the sternum
38:30 – Feel centre of the heart space
42:30 – Inhale and radiate from the heart, exhale and withdraw to heart
50:00 – Attenuate breath while in the heart and repose
55:30 – Back to the midpoint of eyebrows, feel breath and open eyes
60:00 – Retain composure


Meditation Using Habitual Engrossment

Meditation on one principle using the method of samāpatti (habitual engrossment of mind on the object of contemplation through momentum of diligent effort) is considered especially fruitful for beginners. That one principle can be either: Ananta samāpatti which is engrossment in emptiness or Iśwara samāpatti which is engrossment in godliness. Both rely on attainment of calmness and bring about mindfulness.

Engrossment in emptiness bears the thesis: I am the observer of all fluctuations that are arising in my mind. A recollection of such an ‘I’ as a support of contemplation brings calmness from the subtle feeling of void. This is also called the contemplation on I-sense. Iśwara is described as that Being who is free from all afflictions, karma and its results, bereft of any subliminal impression other than tranquility. The best English translation of Iśwara is God. Engrossment in godliness invokes a singular contemplation that one is immersed in God but within one’s own heart.

Seekers who prefer the more intellectual path of knowledge often choose the practice of engrossment in emptiness. Whereas devotees lovingly connect with the practice of engrossment in godliness. Both types of guided meditations are available to try and are suitable for all aspirants.


Guided Meditation with Engrossment in Emptiness (Ananta Samāpatti)

Experience the practice of ananta samāpatti from sage Patanjali’s Yogasutra with this 40 minute guided meditation. His Holiness Swami Vidyadhishananda opens with an Om chant before guiding the practice. This meditation is geared towards beginners, but is suitable for all levels.

Guided Meditation with Engrossment in Godliness (Iśwara samāpatti)

Experience the practice of Iśwara samāpatti from sage Patanjali’s Yogasutra with this 40 minute guided meditation. Iśwara is described in the Yogasutra as that being who is free from all afflictions, karma and its results, and any latent impression other than tranquility. The best English translation of Iśwara, who is omniscient and omnipotent due to immense mental prowess, is God. His Holiness Swami Vidyadhishananda offers opening Sanskrit chanting before guiding the practice. This meditation is geared towards beginners, but is suitable for all levels.



Attend a Meditation

Guided meditation services with His Holiness Swami Vidyadhishananda are held in Southern California on a regular basis. Experience chanting, breathwork, wisdom teachings and meditation at these regular fellowships. To attend a fellowship please check our online calendar or see the events listing below. Out-of-town guests are always welcome and may contact our main office for travel assistance.



Learn Online

Experience a guided meditation by His Holiness Swami Vidyadhishananda online at our Multimedia website. You may purchase a subscription for unlimited access to all of our guided meditations, or rent or buy individual courses. A monthly subscription also allows you to access new guided meditations, which are added from time to time. To preview the guided meditation series on our Multimedia platform please click the button below.



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Kindness in the Light of Compassion

Dharma is said to be complete when kindness and charity are practised as its integral components in addition to other basic principles of right conduct.

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Attend an Event

  • Tue 12

    Meditation Retreat – KriyāLaya

    December 9 @ 4:00 pm - December 15 @ 1:00 pm
    Watsonville
    Sun 31

    Livestream Teaching – New Year’s Eve

    December 31 @ 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
    Jan 01

    Full Moon Fellowship

    January 1, 2018 @ 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
    Santa Barbara