Archive for October, 2007

Below is a meditation which I recently began using and which I find to be a beautiful way of feeling the beauty and joy of each and every day. Even the ones which don’t seem to be going the way we would like them be going, a few minutes with this meditation puts all things into an entirely different perspective and leaves us feeling much more accepting of all that comes our way. For in effect, EVERYTHING which is sent to us, in any form, is a blessing from God and the Universe…we just don’t always perceive it as such.

I’d love to get your comments on this meditation and hope you WILL try it.

Credit to the author:

“Radical Acceptance – Embracing Your Life with the Heart of a Buddha” – Tara Brach, Ph.D

I would suggest that you record this for yourself so that you can hear the guided meditation several times before trying it alone without the recording. Also, when you imagine the smile, try to picture a half-smile, similar perhaps to the Mona Lisa or if you are familiar with it, the Buddha as he is pictured in statues and pictures (see above).

Sitting comfortably, close your eyes and let the natural rhythm of the breath help you to relax. Take a few moments to let go of obvious places of tightness and tension. Now, listening to sounds and becoming ware of the space around you, allow the curved image of a smile to appear in your mind. Notice how gentleness, kindness, openness and ease arise with the idea of a smile. Sense the curved relaxed smile fill your mind and extend outward into space.

Now imagine a smile at the corner of both eyes and feel the sensations that arise there. Allow your brow to be smooth, the flesh around your eyes to be soft and relaxed. You might sense your eyes floating gently as if in a pool of warm water. Continue to soften and let go through the whole area around the eyes. Can you perceive a relaxed brightness there?

Now bring a small but real smile to your lips, the half-smile of the Buddha, and allow the feeling to relax the muscles of your face. Let the jaw be relaxed and loose, and let the tip of the tongue lightly touch the roof of the mouth. Feel now how the eyes are smiling…the mouth is smiling…

Bring the image of a smile to your throat and notice what happens. There might be a relaxing and opening. If there is tightness allow it to be held in the sense of the smile. Feel again the corners of your eyes smiling, your mouth smiling, your throat smiling.
Let the smile drift down into your chest. Imagine the shape and feeling of a smile spreading through the area of your heart. Whatever feelings might be there, allow them to float in the openness and kindness of a smile. Continuing to relax, sense the smile in your heart sending ripples of ease throughout your body – through the shoulders, along the arms and down into the torso and legs. Can you feel the openness and vibrancy of a smile at the navel, the genitals, the base of the spine?

Allow yourself to rest in the spacious and kind awareness that is engendered by a smile. When thoughts, sensations or emotions arise, can you sense how they are held with unconditional friendliness? If your mind wanders or you find yourself tightening, you can gently reestablish the smile in your mind, eyes, mouth and heart.

With practice, you will find that the smile is a simple and powerful way to reawaken the heart at any moment of the day. Rather than a full “smile-down” as described above, you can also explore simply assuming the half-smile of the Buddha whenever you remember.

Hope you find time to use it …it is really a powerful tool towards inner peace and loving acceptance of life, ESPECIALLY when things are not going well in general, or you are just having a “bad day”.


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