Candle Flame Meditations 2

We can take the candle flame meditation a bit deeper in terms of experience.

Notice is that after studying the flame for several minutes, intently, and with minimal blinking, it will appear either in the mind’s eye or vividly against a white wall [look away from the candle in this last instant] in reversed colors. A yellow candle flame will appear blue-ish or purple-ish. You can test this with various other objects, as was done both in the Indian Tattwa meditations, and in some Western practices as well. If you focus attention, as an example, on a red triangle, the afterimage on a white wall or in the mind, will be green.  You do have to stare intently without much eye movement for a minimum of 30 to 60 seconds.

The Golden Dawn and other groups made intense meditation diagrams using these complementary colors together. They referred to them as “flashing colors.” You can experience the intensity, for example, by drawing or printing a bright red triangle upon a bright deep green background. In using this object for visual meditative practice, the red triangle will jump out at you during the eyes open contemplation due to the maximal contrast between foreground and background. You can create any object at this intensity by using the exact complementary color as a background to the color of the object. This effect can be so jarring than many artists painting in a more subtle style will avoid the exact complementary color as being too bold.

Neti Neti Meditation

To move away from breath based exercises for awhile: here is a meditation loosely based upon a meditation from the yogic traditions that has the potential of leading to rather profound results.

Take a few moments to relax and allow your breathing to become calm and regular, but don’t really focus upon it.

After you’ve allowed some space from the immediate concerns of life, focus upon your foot with as much mental clarity as possible, but certainly don’t allow frustration to develop over lack of absolute clarity. Once the idea of your foot occupies your mind, mentally say to yourself: “This foot is not me. If I was without this foot I would still be me. What then am I?” During the final part of this mental statement, imagine that your foot disappears. Repeat this sequence with each area of the body: the other foot, the calves, the thighs, etc., up to and including the head, face and brain.

What is “I” in absence of the brain. . . . . ?

What insights arise from this exercise after a few weeks of daily practice?