Gloria P. Oberbeck, M.D. | Board Certified in Family Medicine | (303) 828-9200

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Ruckshau Meditation

To increase objective awareness & visualization ability
As per Rudolph Steiner, paraphrased from The Fourfold Path of Healing by Thomas Cowan MD (Ruckshau means reflection or contemplative review in German)

The meditation is a simple meditative device that takes 5-15 minutes every evening. Ready yourself by sitting quietly in a comfortable position. Then, carefully review the events of the day, starting with the most recent event and moving backwards to the events of the morning. Attempt to fashion a clear image of yourself as you worked, played, and interacted with others. Conjure in your mind the actual nature of each activity or encounter. At the same time, remember what feelings you experienced at the various moments that you recall. Resist all impulses to judge yourself, but rather cultivate a state of detached observation. Watch yourself as you live just as you watch a good friend.

This may seem a simple exercise, but most will find it a challenge to make it all the way back to the morning. Inevitably things will be left out or forgotten, but as time goes on this objective part of yourself will grow stronger and more confident. With its growing strength, the mental body will be more available during normal waking moments, and it will provide you with a sure way to deal with both the stormy and becalming moments of life. Soon you will find that many activities which some would classify as drudgery - cooking, driving, gardening – are actually opportunities for focused meditation or objective thinking. Gradually, this cultivated objectivity will help you understand yourself more thoroughly and deeply than any reliance on the emotions – whether they be the emotions of love or of fear.

True health and true freedom are achieved when we can experience the full breadth and depth of the emotional realm while remaining objective about all that happens to us.

Empty Bowl Meditation

(Kevala Kumbhak)
from Vasant Lad, B.A.M.S., M.A.Sc.

Sit comfortably and quietly with palms up and open, placed on knees, like empty bowls. Open the mouth slightly and touch the tongue to the roof of the mouth, behind the front teeth. Pay attention to the breath. Let the lungs breathe with no effort on your part. Breath is object of awareness. Simply watch the movement of breath. As you are watching the movement of your breath, pay attention to the tip of your nose. Just be aware of the touch of air going into the nose. Cool air going in, warm air coming out. Sit this way, quietly, observing breath, for about 5 minutes.

After 5 minutes, follow the breath. Go with the air into the nose, throat, heart, diaphragm, deep down into the belly behind the belly button, where you will experience a natural stop. Stay in this stop for a fraction of a second, then follow the breath on exhalation, as it reverses its course up from the belly behind the diaphragm, heart, throat, out through the nose. and out of the body to about 9" in front of the nose to a second stop.

The first stop is behind the belly button, the second stop is outside the body in space. At these two stops, breath stops. At these two stops, time stops. Movement of breath is time. In these two stops, only existence is present. In these two stops you are surrounded by peace and love.

(In these stops, God is present. In these stops you become like an empty bowl. The moment you become like an empty bowl, the divine lips can touch you. God will seek you and pour benediction into you).

Let the lungs breathe and you become the empty bowl. Practice this meditation for 15 minutes in the morning and in the evening. As you practice this meditation, over the days, weeks, months, you will find your time in the stops naturally prolonging until eventually inner and outer will merge at the 3rd eye and everything will happen within you.

You may also practice this meditation in a prone position.

Five-Minute Meditation Detox

Step 1: Get Comfortable & Breathe
Sit up in a chair with your back straight. Place your feet flat on the floor under your knees. Rest the palms of your hands on your thighs and relax your arms. Look straight ahead but try not to focus anywhere in particular. Instead, notice everything in the room at once. Take a deep breath and start feeling your feet. Feel them touching the floor or the inside of your shoes. Feel the temperature, the humidity; feel the texture of your socks. Feel your feet intensely from inside. Do not “think” about them, just feel them, sense them.

Step 2: Scan Your Body with Attention
After a few breaths, move your attention to your calves. Feel and sense these for several breaths. Then move your attention from body part to body part, first to your thighs, then your bottom against the chair, then to your abdomen and lower back, your chest and upper back, your shoulders, your arms, your hands, your neck, face, and lastly your head. Then let your awareness cover your whole body at the same time. The idea is to “scan” your body with your attention, stopping for a few breaths on each part. This practice will strengthen your ability to direct and hold your attention.

Step 3: Thank Your Monkey Mind for Sharing
You may notice that the moment you sit down, you start remembering things and feel the urge to act on them. This is part of the process. When those thoughts come and try to steal your attention away from your body, simply say silently to yourself, “Thank you for sharing,” and direct your attention back to your body. If you feel discomfort or frustration and want to stop, just keep sitting still. Know that the discomfort you feel is not caused by the exercise itself. It’s what happens when you become aware of your baseline state, that underlying anxiety you are typically not aware of when the outside world is at full volume and your attention is far from your body. Becoming aware of this underlying state is the first step toward dissolving it, and claiming back the energy it consumes.

Step 4: Where did that thought come from?
When you find yourself consumed by your monkey mind, try for a second to separate your attention from your thoughts and re-focus it on the present. Ask yourself:

"Who is deciding that I think these thoughts? If I had a choice, would I be thinking them?”

If your answer is no, say to your thoughts: “Thank you for sharing!” then immediately direct your attention to something in the present. For example, you can focus your attention on your feet. Again, this doesn’t mean think about your feet, but feel them. This small boost of awareness breaks through habitual thought patterns that lead away from the present moment and into distracted thoughts. Anchor your attention into the present moment as often as you can.

Step 5: Use Anytime, Anywhere
This technique can also be used in the middle of any stressful situation like a business meeting or a job interview. When we are nervous, it is because our unconscious thoughts are interpreting, judging, measuring, and expecting. This unconcious process consumes vital energy and builds anxiety.

By re-directing our attention to our body and breath, we reclaim that wasted energy. It may be hard to remember to do this in difficult situations. Start with easy ones. Then try to do it in harder and harder ones. My personal experience is that if I am even present for a split second, and remember to redirect my attention into my body, immediately the energy of the situation shifts. When you become more present, others in the room feel it as well.

Practicing being present will help clear out Quantum Toxins from your mind. You will begin to be able to use your energy and attention to stay present and be more productive. This practice will also help you be more aware of the decisions you are making about what you eat. Practicing this simple 5-minute meditation is a great way to help clean the mind, body, and strengthen your ability to stay present and anxiety-free throughout the rest of your day.