The Taoists have been practicing meditation for thousands of years. Today, meditation techniques are becoming more and more accepted by doctors and health practitioners. Recent studies have shown a direct link between meditation and longevity. Researchers have found that people who practice meditation live longer than those who do not. Meditation has been proven to lower blood pressure and improve one’s mental capacity and function. Meditation can also help in your love life. By learning to empty your mind and become one with yourself, you are able to enjoy the benefits of sexual spontaneity. One is able to transcend fixed expectations in lovemaking and approach his or her partner with openness and oneness.
There are many meditation techniques available. One of easiest techniques to emptying your mind is to count each complete cycle of inhalation and exhalation of your breath. Sit on a firm cushion crossing your legs in a lotus position or sit with your legs straight out in front of you. Keep your spine straight and your eyes lightly closed. Relax and breath through your nose. Count the cycles of your breathing up to five hundred or more. Think only of your breathing. Slowly, let your mind empty of everyday thoughts. Focus your attention inward. If a thought disturbs you or your mind begins to wander, stop and begin again. Remember, learning to empty your mind is achieved only through continual practice. After Mastering the counting method of meditation, you should start to concentrate on your Tan-Tien. The Tan-Tien is where chi is gathered and stored naturally in the body. By concentrating on the Tan-Tien you are able to achieve a settled state of inner wakefulness without the conscience effort of the counting of your breath. Maintaining this inner wakefulness helps to eliminate deeply rooted stress and you begin the process self-realization. You become one with yourself and not separate aspects of body and mind. Remember: meditation should be practiced with regularity and do not become discouraged.
After learning to concentrate on the Tan Tien, one is ready to begin the practice of circulating the chi through the body. This continuous flow of energy in a single circuit is called the little nine heaven circulation. The Taoists discovered centuries ago, that there are 2 main energy channels within the body. The first channel is the Governor or Yang channel. This channel commences at the perineum and flows upward into the tail bone, then up through the spine and into the base of the skull. From there it enters the brain, and then moves downward to the roof of the mouth. The second channel is called the Functional or Yin channel. This channel connects with its opposite, the Governor channel, at the roof of the mouth. The Functional channel brings the chi down through the roof of the mouth, through the throat to the heart. From the heart the energy flows through the abdominal organs and back down to the perineum. In order to maintain a continuous circuit, it is very important to keep the tongue pressed lightly to the roof of the mouth. By doing so, one is able to provide a bridge for energy to travel from the roof of the mouth to the lower front of the body. Essentially when beginning to practice this form of meditation, try to focus your mind inward on the two channels. Inhale and concentrate on the energy flowing up the Governor channel. Exhale and the energy will flow down the Functional channel. At first one must concentrate on the chi flowing through the channels but after a while the chi will flow naturally. With practice you’ll be able to circulate your chi at any time, any place and under any conditions.
(with a partner)
When both partners have Mastered the Microcosmic Orbit successfully, they should start to practice back to back meditation. By practicing this form of meditation, both partners are able to expand their chi within their own bodies. You and your partner should sit on a firm pad back to back. Remember to keep the tongue on the roof of mouth. Regulate your breathing to that of your partner. Focus your mind on the energy of each other. Begin to feel the chi from your partner. Let your mind feel the energy as chi flows through the Microcosmic Orbit from you to your partner and from your partner back to you. Allow the chi to flow at will without forcing it. This form of meditation allows one to cultivate the chi to higher levels then experienced previously. At the higher level one should learn how to circulate the chi through the 8 meridians.