Teacher Notes

The first and most important thing to do before any class is to meditate. If you can, try and have someone else help you set up the space. As a suggestion, a circular setting with chairs and, if possible, cushions for those that want to sit on the floor works well.

Place a small table in the middle with a cloth, a candle and perhaps flowers. You will need to note the fire safety policy of your venue - they may have smoke detectors and not allow candles.

Play some nice meditative music. Allow yourself 30 minutes or so after everything is set up to go and meditate, and remember that people might start arriving up to 30 mins early for the class. It is a good idea to have others do the meet and greet while you are getting yourself ready. Wayne Dyer has a prayer that he repeats before his presentations “how may I serve?” You may try something similar.

The idea is to listen, to become an instrument, to be intuitively guided, to allow yourself to be used as exactly the conduit that your students need at this time in their lives.

The affairs of the world will go on forever. Do not delay the practice of meditation. ~ Milarepa

Be aware that every class is different, the seekers that come all have completely different needs and your role is to respond to that.

Visualise the whole class, the exercises that you will do, what you will say and see yourself being inspirational and your students being inspired.

In any kind of public speaking, you need the practicalities of a joke or a story or an exercise to reinvigorate or help pace the session so work those out as well, have a couple of plan b’s should everything not go exactly as planned.

Meditation is actually really fun to teach because it is so practical. You will need some explanations and theory in the beginning but as the classes progress, the theory should succumb to more and more practical meditation exercises.

The exercises are the best teacher, because after all you are trying to teach your students to be their own guide. In this way you should try and develop real love and reverence for your students. Be in genuine awe of their stories, enamoured by their revelations, really listen and open yourself to their experience. They have come into your life at this time for you as well as themselves.

Let's begin

Then after you have meditated, make sure you are on time. You can be a minute or two early, but do not be late - always, always, always be on time. First impressions are extremely important.

So be on time, smile, make eye contact where possible and really concentrate on radiating love to everyone in the room. Give reverence and love.

The best way to do this is to introduce yourself very briefly and then ask each person to say their name as you go around the group. You can only do this practically with small groups of no more than 30 people but if you have more than that just ask each person to shake hands and introduce themselves to the person either side of them. As this happens try and send love to every person in the room. You can ask for a show of hands to see who has meditated before, but this first class is basically to dispel some of the mystery about meditation, we start by explaining how it works.

You can refer directly to class 1 here if you want but for these first few classes the important information is copied across to here, whilst in later classes your teacher login will give you access to teacher information directly in the class itself. These first few classes also have a lot of extra ideas that you don't necessarily have to use all at once, but may be handy in later sessions.

In Summary This class is about the mechanics of meditation and dispelling the myths.
  • Three steps - superficial mind, analytical mind and then intuitive 'Aah' experiences of the heart.
  • The monkey mind wants to strain and mentally concentrate as though it is hard wor, preferably without a resolution.
  • Heart's concentration is letting go, relaxing, being comfortable in our own skin and letting ourselves surrender to our natural state of calmness, serenity and love.
  • Breathing guided meditation
  • The highest experience in every endeavour is an 'Aah' moment which is of course the moment of meditation.
  • Meditation is extremely simple do not complicate it or make it mysterious.

Are we only in Australia?

  • No, we are forming groups all over the world. So we welcome teachers from everywhere.
  • Our database of meditators has over 500,000 people and only 15% are in Australia.

How much is accreditation?

  • It varies.. sometimes it is free!
  • We recognise that the world has many different economies with very sincere people of varied means.
  • You will need to go here to the join page to find out for sure, because for example, for most third world countries it is free whilst for western countries a very inexpensive $100AUD.

About

The Meditation Society of Australia exists to help people learn to meditate without any other religious or other agendas.

We are a non-profit organisation funded and operated by volunteers.

Class1 - How meditation works
Meditation is an extremely simple process. It follows three distinct steps.


1. We start with a superficial, scattered mind – (This is the level with which we often carry out our day-to-day chores, ‘bring in the newspaper’, ‘cook the meal’ - it is often characterised by lots of thoughts, positive and negative, with very little control or knowledge of how they got there) If we are often in this state of mind, we will find that we are easily distracted, have difficulty concentrating, probably worry about unimportant things and have little understanding of the real 'us'.

2. We then progress by virtue of our heart’s concentration - to deeper, analytical thinking. When our mind is focused completely on one thing, we are the most efficient and purposeful in our thinking. (This is the basis of the rules of ‘time-management’ -> to be focused absolutely on one task at a time) This analytical level reveals the deepest we can go with thought. We can use a number of meditation techniques to achieve this, and they will be explored in further classes.

3. From this very deep thinking we enter into intuitive states, revelations, "I know this is right" feelings or extremely vivid goals or intense creativity or spiritual dreams. When thinking deepens and intuitive experience takes over, this is meditation. We call these moments, 'Aah' moments. These moments are where the deepest moments of revelation and intuition are born, and where we reveal our real self.

The task of meditation is to enter the very focused thinking of the analytical mind and from there the shift to the intuitive mind or heart takes place automatically.



The highest experience in any endeavour is a meditation experience.



Every endeavour goes through similar processes to eventually arrive at meditation experiences.

If, for example, we want to become a pianist, we first have to train the body and the mind to have the correct finger technique etc. For a footballer, the right kicking style; for a rock-climber, the right moves; so we concentrate past the superficial to the analytical mind and learn and practice as efficiently as possible.

As we progress in each endeavour there are moments where our consciousness is transported past the analytical to the intuitive or higher mind or what we may call the heart. Examples of these intuitive or ‘meditative’ moments are typically where a team works as one, a runner experiences the ‘runner’s high’, a bushwalker ceases to be an observer and merges into the feeling of the forest and becomes a participant, a sports person hits a ‘zone’. As we know already these moments are usually;

    Memorable - when we look back on our lives these are the moments that we recall.

    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.
    - Oliver Wendell Holmes

    Fulfilling - they are the reason we spend hours at our endeavours so we can get a few moments of ‘meditation’.

    Accidental - imagine how much better our lives would be if we could meditate at any time we chose.


The seven keys to meditation
1. Find a special place Set aside a special place that is used only for meditation. If you have a spare room, great, but it’s fine to set aside a corner of your bedroom. This will be your sacred space for self-discovery, so you’ll want to make it as inspiring as possible.  
You might like to:
· Cover a low table with a clean, light cloth
· Place a candle on a table, and a vase with fresh flowers if possible.
· You may also want to light some incense. Together, these items will help create a meditative atmosphere.

2. Prepare Physically Your spiritual journey takes place in and through your physical body. Here’s how you can help prepare it for meditation:  
· Take a shower before meditating. If it isn't possible to take a shower, wash your face and hands.
· Wear clean, light, loose fitting clothes.
· Take your shoes off before meditating. Your feet deserve a break too!

3. Sit Relaxed, Sit Straight There’s no need to sit in a special yogic posture to meditate. If you can sit comfortably on a cushion on the floor, this is best. Otherwise a meditation stool or chair is fine. The important thing is to be still and relaxed, to have your back erect, and to have the flower and candle close to eye level. People often ask if it’s okay to meditate while lying down. We don’t recommend it; the most likely outcome is you’ll fall asleep. Always remember to begin your meditation with six or seven ‘power-breaths’ – long, slow deep breaths that release the myriad of thoughts and focus your attention within.

4. Slow and Steady Wins the Race In the beginning, five minutes of meditation a day is enough. Meditation is like an inner muscle that you are slowly but surely making stronger. If you overwork a muscle, it becomes sore; if you meditate for more than five minutes and feel tension in your head or get a headache, you know you’ve gone beyond your capacity. Try not to be concerned with expectations of what your meditation is going to do for you or what your meditation experience ‘should’ be. Just steadily, soulfully and sincerely practice and make yourself alert to the messages that will begin to arise from within

If by giving up small pleasures, great happiness is to be found, the wise should give up small pleasures, seeing the prospect of great happiness - THE BUDDHA.

5. Choose the right time Make an appointment with yourself and practice at the same time each day. Just as you feed your physical body several times a day at certain times, meditation nourishes your inner life so set at least one special time each day for your meditation exercises.   The best time to meditate is early in the morning, before you enter into your daily activities. This way, the peace you get from your meditation will permeate the rest of your day.

6. The Power of Music Music is often referred to as the language of the soul. Peaceful music of the heart will create a meditative atmosphere and tremendously enhance the quality of your meditation. Play it softly during your exercises; merely listening to and absorbing the music will help you to feel the deep inner stillness of meditation

7. YOU! In the end, the most important ingredient in this whole process is you. It is you, who experiences, you, who is discovered, you, who is the student, you, who is the real teacher and you, finally, who is revealed.

Remind yourself of this often because this is the greatest gift of meditation: faith in oneself.

Highly recommended A meditation journal is the best aid I have included to my meditation over the years. Verbalising what you are going through and/or what you are currently focusing on by writing down these self-revelations formalises and crystallises the most crucial process of listening to oneself.

Guided Meditation - Meditating with a candle flame or object
Please read this information on preparing for your meditation

Imagine the candle as an entrance way to the vast spiritual dimensions permeating everything, imagine it as the doorway to the inner universe.

You might see this candle flame standing at the threshold between the physical and spiritual universes.

As you fix your gaze upon it, feel that you are looking at the candle with your heart and that you are travelling through it with infinite peace.

Follow the flow of energy with your breath.

Breathe in the infinite peace of the spiritual universe.

Feel your heart opening and expanding as that peace flows into your being like a golden light.

On your outward breath feel that your worries and anxieties which give birth to many of your mental, emotional and physical tensions, are being gathered up and released. You might imagine this is as a flow of light.

You are breathing in a golden white light that is illumining your being with peace, and the darkness that is your tension in all its flavours, you are letting go.

Try this for at least 5 minutes. Alternatively you can meditate in this manner on love (breathing out and releasing hate and anger) or on breathing in joy (and breathing out depression and melancholy).

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