Keerti writes about the unique prayer meditation to deeply cleanse heart and mind. Published in Asian Age on June 10, 2019.
Osho devised a number of meditation techniques – both active and passive – keeping the modern man in mind. But what fascinated me most is a unique type of meditation called prayer meditation. To me, these two words – prayer and meditation – sound contradictory. As most of us know, our prayers that we did in the past, taught by our elders, were addressed to some God-figure. We were made to imagine or visualise this figure and chant some sweet words and bow down to it. This figure could be of Ram, Krishna, Buddha, Shiva, Ganesh, Hanuman, or one of the many Goddesses – Kali, Durga, Saraswati and others. We have been conditioned to sing prayers to such God-figures at home or at the temples dedicated to them.
It is an interesting fact that we often pray when we want something from our Gods and Goddesses. We may be in some kind of need, and we ask for God’s help in the form of a prayer. Then we wait for this prayer to be heard. Sometimes it gets heard and we assume that God has done something for us. Such prayers are not really pure prayers that make us feel really divine.
In my experience, when our mind is not imagining anything – it is free from the past and the future and we are empty – the prayer may happen out of sheer joy. It may not be verbal even, it may not be addressed to any God of our choice – and still we may be in a prayerful space. The cool breeze caressing us, the starry night stirring our heart, the gentle sunrise, the vast ocean, the bird on its wings singing its song in the open sky, the snow-clad mountains – any such thing could trigger a space of prayerfulness in our heart and we may find ourselves bowing down to existence itself.
Osho suggests that we go through a deep cleansing of our mind and heart. A natural prayer becomes a possibility in that purity of space. It is best done at night in a darkened room, going to sleep immediately afterward or it can be done in the morning, but it must be followed by 15 minutes of rest, otherwise you would feel as if you are drunk, in a stupor. This merging with energy is prayer. It changes you and when you change the whole of existence changes.
First stage: Raise both your hands towards the sky, palms uppermost, head up, just feeling existence flowing in you. As the energy flows down your arms, you will feel a gentle tremor – be like a leaf in the breeze, trembling. Allow it and let it happen. Then let your whole body vibrate with energy and just let whatever happens, happen.
Second stage: After two or three minutes, or whenever you feel completely filled, lean down to the earth and kiss it. You simply become a vehicle to allow the divine energy to unite with that of the earth.
It is best to do it at least seven times or more and settle into a prayerful space. *
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* The Prayer Meditation (full text from Osho’s The Orange Book)
It is best to do this prayer at night, in a darkened room, going to sleep immediately afterwards; or it can be done in the morning, but it must be followed by fifteen minutes rest. This rest is necessary, otherwise you will feel as if you are drunk, in a stupor.
This merging with energy is prayer. It changes you. And when you change, the whole existence changes.
Raise both your hands towards the sky, palms uppermost, head up, just feeling existence flowing in you.
As the energy flows down your arms you will feel a gentle tremor – be like a leaf in a breeze, trembling. Allow it, help it. Then let your whole body vibrate with energy, and just let whatever happens happen.
You feel again a flowing with the earth. Earth and heaven, above and below, yin and yang, male and female – you float, you mix, you drop yourself completely. You are not. You become one … merge.
After two to three minutes, or whenever you feel filled, lean down to the earth and kiss the earth. You simply become a vehicle to allow the divine energy to unite with that of the earth.
These two stages should be repeated six more times so that each of the chakras can become unblocked. More times can be done, but if you do less you will feel restless and unable to sleep.
Go into sleep in that very state of prayer. Just fall asleep and the energy will be there. You will be flowing with it, falling into sleep. That will help very greatly because then the energy will surround you the whole night and it will continue to work. By the morning you will feel more fresh than you have ever felt before, more vital than you have ever felt before. A new élan, a new life will start penetrating you, and the whole day you will feel full of new energy; a new vibe, a new song in your heart, and a new dance in your step.