Meditation is the demand of Present Era. Thus one must know clearly how to sit on meditation. When you sit on doing practice for meditation you need to have a comfortable seat and a good posture. The most important feature of the posture is to keep your back straight. To help you do this, if you are sitting on a cushion you make sure that the back of the cushion is slightly higher than the front, inclining our pelvis slightly forward. It is not necessary at first to sit cross-legged, but it is a good idea to become accustomed for sitting in the posture of Padmaasan. If you cannot hold this posture you should sit in one which is as close to this as possible while remaining comfortable.
There are seven features of posture which are as below:
(1) The legs are crossed in the vajra posture. This helps to reduce thoughts and feelings of desirous attachment.
(2) The right hand is placed in the left hand, palms upwards, with the tips of the thumbs slightly raised and gently touching. The hands are held about four fingers’ width below the navel. This helps us to develop good concentration. The right hand symbolizes method and the left hand symbolizes wisdom – the two together symbolize the union of method and wisdom. The two thumbs at the level of the navel symbolize the blazing of inner fire.
(3) The back is straight but not tense. This helps us to develop and maintain a clear mind, and it allows the subtle energy winds to flow freely.
(4) The lips and teeth are held as usual, but the tongue touches against the back of the upper teeth. This prevents excessive salivation while also preventing our mouth from becoming too dry.
(5) The head is tipped a little forward with the chin slightly tucked in so that the eyes are cast down. This helps prevent mental excitement.
(6) The eyes are neither wide open nor completely closed, but remain half open and gaze down along the line of the nose. If the eyes are wide open we are likely to develop mental excitement and if they are closed we are likely to develop mental sinking.
(7) The shoulders are level and the elbows are held slightly away from the sides to let air circulate.
A further feature of Dhyan Mudra or posture is the preliminary breathing meditation, which prepares your mind for developing a good motivation. When we sit down to meditate our mind is usually full of disturbing thoughts, and we cannot immediately convert such a state of mind into the virtuous one we need as our motivation. A negative, disturbed state of mind is like pitch-black cloth. We cannot dye pitch-black cloth any other colour unless we first remove all the black dye and make the cloth white again. In the same way, if you want to color your mind with a virtuous motivation you need to clear away all your negative thoughts and distractions. You can accomplish this temporarily by practicing breathing meditation.
When you have settled down comfortably on your meditation seat you begin by becoming aware of the thoughts and distractions that are arising in your mind. Then you gently turn your attention to your breath, letting its rhythm remain normal. As you breathe out you imagine that you are breathing away all disturbing thoughts and distractions in the form of black smoke that vanishes in space. As you breathe in you imagine that you are breathing in all the blessings and inspiration of the holy beings in the form of white light that enters your body and absorbs into your heart. You maintain this visualization single-pointedly with each inhalation and exhalation for twenty-one rounds, or until our mind has become peaceful and alert. If you concentrate on your breathing in this way, negative thoughts and distractions will temporarily disappear because you cannot concentrate on more than one object at a time. At the conclusion of your breathing meditation you should think `Now I have received the blessings and inspiration of all the holy beings.’ At this stage your mind is like a clean white cloth which you can now colour with a virtuous motivation such as compassion
You can get the complete knowledge of meditation by sitting face to face. You can learn Surat-Shabd yog also to attain the God and at the same time path of meditation also for attaining the God.