Creating Space – Week 2

Week Two – Setting, physical posture, and beginning stabilizing or concentrated meditation

Making a place to meditate
Ideally, when we are good at it, meditation can be done anywhere, while we are walking,
standing in line at the grocery store or engaged in other daily activities. For beginners, and that
means most of us, it is helpful to have a special place set aside where we can go to sit and quiet
our busy minds so that we can turn to something positive. This can be a corner of a room, or a
chair, or you can simply make your bed and sit on it. If you like to have an altar, there will be
more about setting up a Buddhist altar covered in the Odyssey to Freedom course.

{{{Creating Space}}}

--- Video to go here ----

Physical posture
“Sit on the ground, if the ground’s not there, sit on a chair.” Allen Ginsberg, Do the
Meditation Rock
There are many types of cushions, chairs, etc. Try them and find what works for

Two most important things – 1. Keep your back flexibly straight. 2. Don’t sit in a painful
Also, breathe through the nose, unless you have a bad cold!

The classic 7-Point Vairochana posture – this helps the mind become stable.
1. Legs crossed in vajra style or a comfortable position depending on one’s
2. Hands in lap, right hand on left palm, thumbs touching.
3. Backbone straight but flexible, so that energy can flow freely.
4. Eyes mostly shut (or shut) gazing unfocused downwards and outwards.
5. Shoulders level and relaxed, chest open.
6. Head balanced evenly on the spine, not tilted back. Pull chin in slightly.
7. Mouth and jaw relaxed and natural, lips closed gently. Tongue just touches
the palate behind upper teeth.

8. (quiet breathing through the nose – sometimes listed as 8th step)
Hatha yoga or stretching can be helpful in making it possible to sit comfortably for longer
periods, by loosening up the hip joints, and making the back stronger and more flexible.

Nine round breathing Clearing out stale air and energy. Do gently, as many times as needed.
Sit with back straight and relaxed. Block the right nostril with the right index finger and
inhale slowly and gently through the left nostril. As you begin to exhale, move the right index
finger to the left nostril so that you breathe out through the right nostril. Imagine that you are
breathing out all anger, hatred and irritation. Do this 3 times.
Now block the left nostril with the left index finger and inhale through the right nostril,
then switch the left index finger to the right nostril and exhale through the left nostril. Imagine
you are breathing out all greed and obsession. Do this 3 times.
Now place your hands in your lap and breathe in through both nostrils. Breathe out
through both nostrils, or you can imagine your breath coming out between your eyebrows as you
exhale all confusions and delusions. Do this 3 times.

Concentrated meditation on points of light in the body. White light at crown or red light at

Learning, thinking and meditating
By first learning about a Dharma topic, for instance impermanence or compassion, then
thinking about all aspects of it and how it relates to our life, then meditating deeply on it, we
make it a part of ourselves so that we can then actualize it. This is how we gain wisdom, how we
develop spiritually.

May all beings have happiness.
May they be free from suffering.
May they find the joy that has never known suffering.
May they be free from attachment and hatred.

Posted on Saturday, January 8th, 2011