Yoga: Meditation with method – hello Osho

I’m not exactly sure how I first came across the wonder of Osho. I think perhaps through a quote posted by one of my healing friends but it seems that he appeared at just the right time in my life.  I have been meditating religiously, almost every day for over a year now and despite feeling some huge, initial shifts in my life energetically towards the beginning of that year which have also come about through intense yoga practice, my progress appeared to have been stunted to some degree. It’s interesting that, on the path to samadhi, Patanjali warns of the initial excitement that will come through a student making giant leaps at the beginning of their spiritual journey and the almost inevitable slump which will follow as that progress plateaus. It’s interesting that Osho speaks of polarities in energy and to some degree, that is exactly what I have seen here. A peak followed by a trough is natural in the same way that as many mystics have observed, all energy has it’s opposing flow – ying and yang, prana and apana. For me, I have been feeling some level of frustration that, although I have many times returned to consciousness from a session of meditation knowing that I have not been asleep, I wouldn’t say that I have been what Osho would describe as being awake.
So far, I hadn’t experienced that awareness that many spiritual gurus attempt to lead us into; the presence of which Eckhart Tolle waxes lyrical. I felt that my savasana was more corpse, less pose and sitting in stillness less than easy. It was with great excitement then, that I heard about Osho who has devised techniques for those of us who find the idea of meditation painful in itself, simply due to your need to feel that you are constantly ‘on the go’. Now don’t get me wrong, I have very much enjoyed my meditation thus far, it’s just that there have been times where, I feel I may as well have been fast asleep… in fact, possibly could have been as I lose that much of myself and I felt that somehow, I have been missing something. It’s not that I am ever likely to give up yoga and I still more than feel the benefits but, as Osho himself says, “The long drawn out yoga practices will not do for the world; now people do not have days or even hours to spare. We need methods that yield quick results.”
Osho appears to have found it for me and in the next few blog posts, as I try out some of his meditation techniques, you can journey along with me as I write about my experiences of them and we will see. Today, trying the first of his meditation techniques – catharsis, I found it a bigger challenge than I could have expected but for the first time, I do believe I glimpsed finally, the window I am trying to get through. Snorting air out of my nose, focusing on the exhalation of the first stage of the cathartic meditation at first seemed second nature since I teach fire breath as pranayama in my classes. However, I soon realised that the aim was to make this an incoherent, rhythmless, chaotic act, itself difficult, coupled with the fact that forcing air out of your nose quickly soon makes it begin to burn. Trying to maintain this for ten full minutes felt like an eternity and I was forced to stop a couple of times.
I found the next stage, ‘explosion’ easy for the first couple of minutes, mainly because I did feel pretty over excited and threw punches around the room at imaginary subjects but I was soon overtaken by a huge desire to flop in a heap, exhausted which I did for a few minutes. Next came the ‘Hoo’ jumping which my neighbours, (if they hadn’t thought I was nuts already) must have really thought the men in white coats might be required. However, it was in the midst of this nuttiness that I glimpsed, just for a split second, a moment where, in my head, all was dark and quiet and nothing was moving despite the fact that below me, my body continued to hurl itself around the room. I am now suffering from severely sore calf muscles from all that jumping and I’m going to have to teach yoga very soon but I can sure as heck say, I will as Osho suggests, be giving it a few more ‘goes’ before I decide whether or not to throw this one out of the bag and move onto the Kundalini meditation. Watch this space if you’re interested in seeing what happens.