Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Be Still Practice

There are several places in the Bible where the writers urge us to "Be still" (I'll talk about that next post). This is a favorite phrase of mine, because I have Monkey Mind at its best and I complement that with an obsession to accomplish as much as I can in the least amount of time. Whenever you need some calm, try this meditation technique that I learned years ago and has been part of my spiritual practice ever since.

1. Sit quietly and comfortably anywhere that will give you the least distraction (I know for a fact that this will work on a crowded, noisy subway, however, so don't let noise deter you). Works best with eyes closed.
2. Pick a verse from the Bible, preferably one line with several words.
3. Begin by repeating the phrase silently several times, slowly, mindful of each word.
4. Remove the last significant word from the phrase and repeat again several times.
5. Continue Step 4 until you are at the last word. Repeat several times, then continue to let you mind rest in silence or open your eyes and return to the world.

The Bible verse I always use is Psalm 46, verse 11, line 1: "Be still, then, and know that I am God."

Here's what happens in the meditation as you drop each ending word:
Be still, then, and know that I am God.
Be still, then, and know that I am.
Be still, then, and know that I.
Be still, then, and know.
Be still, then.
Be still.

Each line is being repeated several times, so with this phrase, the practice will take several minutes, enough time to quiet Monkey Mind and find your center.

Pick a Bible verse or a favorite line of poetry that calms you and try this. Let me know what you think.


1 comment:

  1. This is something I have been doing for a number of years and have found the fruits of such a simple centering prayer to be very beneficial in times of difficulty. I would strongly recommend this practice to anyone who finds themselves lonely, confused or undirected. I typically use the same verse. It's richness is buried within it's simplistic style.