By Claire L Dixon
When the time arrives for you to reach out into the ether and 'make contact' just who do you believe that you will find there? This will of course vary from belief to belief, but generally the first spirit you should actively seek out to communicate with will be one of your guides. Yes, we can all 'talk' to the spirits of deceased loved ones as if they were in the room with us, whether we believe they are actually there or not. But for the purpose of learning about your gift, and developing your abilities, your first port of call should be with your guides.
So how do you go about reaching out to them? The flippant answer would be 'just ask them!' But really, I'm sure that they would appreciate a more respectful and thoughtful approach. This is where your ability to meditate comes in.
Over the years meditation has been something that has been mocked and ridiculed as something performed by 'hippies' after entering a drug induced, trance like haze, or something that the weirdo at the end of the street does in his garden at the crack of dawn. Each to their own I say. In reality meditation is a way of calming the mind and pushing all of your mental clutter than has accumulated in there to the side, so that you had actually hear yourself think. When was the last time that you actually switched off? Forgot about all of the lists that we are so fond of making for ourselves, and actually listened to yourself? We are so caught up everyday in the things that we think we need to do, the things that we believe we should be doing or that others expect of us, that we forget about the things that we need to do for the sake of our well being. Ten minutes of quality meditation can refresh your body and mind just as much as a good nights sleep can!
Meditation, like any skill, gets easier and better with practice. Just like your grounding and protection exercises, the more you do it, the more like second nature it will become. Rather than jumping straight in and expecting to connect to your guides the first time you try, I would suggest that you begin with some simple relaxation meditations, so that you get used to the idea of switching off your overactive brain, and learn how to feel at peace. I will provide an example here of a simple relaxation meditation to give you some idea, there are many more listed on my spiritual forum Circle of Light, of which you are welcome to use for yourselves. Don't worry if you tend to fall asleep the first few times you try, at least it shows that you are learning to relax - and how much you need to learn to meditate!
Simple Relaxation Meditation.
1. Find somewhere comfortable and quiet where you are unlikely to be disturbed, preferably in a seated position with your feet flat on the floor. if you lie on the bed you run the risk of falling asleep as soon as you start!
2. Close your eyes and listen to your breathing. Focus on slowing the rate of the breathing. Inhale through the nose for a count of 7 then exhale through the mouth for a count of 11. Each time you exhale let your muscles relax a little further.
3. Spend a couple of minutes listening to your breath enter your body, focus on the sound it makes. Notice how the air is cool when it enters and warm when it leaves.
4. Now you are going to learn how to visualise. Everybody has a special place in their minds, whether it's a reproduction of an actual place they have visited, or an imaginary place where everything fits to an ideal. For some its in the heart of a forest, to others it could be a log cabin on the side of a mountain, or on a cliff top looking out to sea. Wherever you feel to be your special place, picture it in your mind, or go with the first image that pops in there.
5. Place yourself inside your visualisation, imagine yourself sitting under a tree, or sitting by a lake or on the beach, whatever fits with your visualisation, remember this place is special to you, a personal place that makes you feel safe and secure, relaxed and happy.
6. Within your visualisation, look at the scene around you. What can you see, do things look real or are the colours more vibrant? What can you hear, is the wind blowing, is water rippling? What can you smell, is the air salty, can you smell flowers?
7. Spend a few minutes exploring your surroundings, deepening your impressions of the place that you are in. Remember to look for other beings that may be there, animals for instance, that may have a special significance to you.
8. Stay there for as long as you feel comfortable before bringing your attention back into the 'real world'. Sit quietly and focus on your breathing once again. Think about what you saw and what you felt there. More importantly know that you can revisit that special place any time you wish.
This is a lovely meditation to start with, the more you practice it, the more you can build on the depth of the visualisation, learn to interact with any creatures that reside their with you. It may be that you will find another being comes to share that space with you. Take this as a good sign that you are ready to communicate with your guides. If you feel confident and secure enough you can begin to ask questions of this other being, it may be that you will recognise them as someone who once shared your life. Keep your questions simple to being with, don't rush in and ask them to explain the meaning of life!
Ultimately, remember that this is an experience that is unique to you. No two people will have exactly the same experience, though you may find similarities in the sessions progress. If you are finding it difficult to achieve a state of meditational peace on your own, it may be that you would do better following a guided meditation. For example a meditation exercise recorded onto CD, with soft ambient background music, which leads you into relaxation then meditation and brings you back to the 'real word' following a set pattern. I could recommend several, but again this is a personal choice. For an idea of what is available in this area please feel free to browse through my collection at The Covenstead. Whichever method that you choose to access a meditative state, I really believe that Its a great way to open yourself up for spiritual contact. Plus, you know that you always have a safe place to escape to when you need to clear you head.
The author is a practicing witch and psychic/intuitive who hosts a spiritual and witchcraft forum at http://www.circleoflight.myfreeforum.org and who runs a web based business http://www.the-covenstead.com supplying the mystical community with reference materials, ritual supplies, crystal therapy items and beautiful jewelery.