The best way to unclutter anything is to clean it and empty it of everything it contains. The same principle works for your soul. Hollow body meditation works on the same principle. It is the best and most effective technique to dissolve the accumulated stress and tension. You visualize your physical body as a hologram and experience the space and openness by imagining that there is nothing substantial inside, no organs, no blood or anything.
Hollow body meditation connects us to the deeper reality of what we are and what is our existence all about. In this meditation, we visualize an empty space within the container that is our skin. However this empty space is not a vacuum, it is filled with energy and is radiant. During hollow body meditation, since, the mass and the physical entity is not recognized, a lighter form of existence is experienced. The energy and radiance when felt motivates and encourages to let go of all the physical tension and pains and problems.
Do nothing with the body but relax, let the mind remain in its unformed state become like a hollow bamboo so that everything flows through – Tilopa, The Song of Mahamudra
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To practice hollow body meditation, follow these steps.
Start deep breaths and then gradually move to mindful breathing. When you exhale, visualize taking out the denseness and weight of the physical body. As you inhale, fill yourself up with space and emptiness. Bring this feeling in all parts of your body, one region at a time.
Feel the vibration, sensations, and movement in your body and visualize the spreading of energy, space, and radiance.
Let your thoughts, feelings, and perceptions flow in your body and dissipate on their own. Gradually you will gain enough strength to ignore these interferences.
Some parts of your body may not be cooperative enough but with continuous practice, you will be able to feel the space in the whole body, and every organ will participate.
This age-old technique creates an inner sense of wholeness that enables us to approach a unified, open and relaxed form of the body. The continuous practice you will attain higher sensitivity so that you can listen to the silence and space between thoughts.
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Featured Image Courtesy: Flickr via Nickolai Kashirin (www.flickr.com/photos/nkashirin/)
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