Welcome to the Order of the Sacred Star! This Pagan/Wiccan group, based in Winnipeg, Canada, is committed to teaching the Craft to all those who wish to learn. Our goal is to provide a complete and fulfulling learning experience. Our public classes are offered through the Winnipeg Pagan Teaching Circle.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

How Does Meditation Work?

Meditation is a powerful tool for spirituality and discipline, but how and why it works is sometimes a mystery to even its most advanced practitioners. To begin to understand how meditation works, it is important to first consider the belief that humans are not just physical beings, but spiritual beings as well.

The Spiritual Body as a Key to Meditation

The spiritual body, the part of the human body that cannot be seen with the naked eye, is connected to the physical body at certain vital centers. These centers are called chakras. There are seven major chakra centers, located from the groin up to the top of the head. During meditation, a powerful psychic force begins to flow along these chakras, as each is opened in succession.

The root chakra, located roughly at the groin (the exact position differs according to gender), is the first chakra to open. This is followed by the spleen, solar plexus, heart, throat, and third eye chakras. Finally, the crown chakra, located at the very top of the head, is opened. The exact method by which this occurs is beyond the scope of this article. It is enough to say that this flow of energy is what allows a connection to the divine, and the many benefits that meditation can afford.

The Conscious, Subconscious, and Superconscious Mind in Relation to Meditation

The mind can be divided into three sections, for the purpose of studying meditation: the conscious, the superconscious, and the subconscious. The conscious mind is the part of the mind concerned with the mundane. It is the part that is awake and alert to the physical well-being of the body.

The superconscious mind is also called the higher-self. This higher consciousness is concerned with the spiritual well-being of the soul, and also retains a connection to the divine. The superconscious mind and the conscious mind do not tend to interact, at least for most people. In order for these two disparate parts of the mind to connect, a bridge is needed.

This bridge is the subconscious mind. It is the largely passive part of the mind that is usually subordinate to the conscious mind. The subconscious mind rules the involuntary functions of the body and mind such as reflexes and instinct. It is also the part of the mind that bridges the gap between the conscious mind and the superconscious mind, and it can become truly active during meditation.

The Subconscious Mind During Meditation

During proper meditation, energy begins to flow in an upward direction, through the chakras, awakening the subconscious mind. This energy acts as a calming and relaxing force on the body and the mind. As the chakras continue to open, an awareness of life begins to flow continually. A new sense of energy and well-being is often the result.

The subconscious mind begins to clear, and negative or undesired patterns of thoughts and feelings can be put to rest. The superconscious and conscious minds become actively linked, and a connection with the divine is possible, though the power of the superconscious mind, and with the direct control of the conscious mind.

At the same time, the now-active subconscious mind allows the conscious mind to become calm and open. This allows the conscious mind to solve problems and discipline the body, and brings forth the other benefits of meditation. The conscious mind can also, in a sense, reprogram the subconscious mind, allowing it to become more than simply subordinate to the conscious mind. The subconscious mind can become a channel to the higher self, through the power of meditation.

The spiritual body can be brought to life through the power of meditation. And through the chakras, which connect the spiritual to the physical, the physical body can achieve a sense of calm, relaxed well-being.

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