A MEDITATION FOR
The photo above is a satellite representation of lights shining around the world at night ~ another symbol of our global interconnection. Images like this make a great focus for meditation, such as the "Fall into Sleep" practice we are giving you below. Fall into something of awe and wonder, something of gratitude and joy. Fall into Love. No better time than now. ~ Camille
Fall into Sleep
Excerpt from MEDITATION 24/7: Practices to Enlighten Every Moment of the Day
Copyright © 2004 by Camille Maurine and Lorin Roche
At the end of the day we lay our bodies down, close our eyes to the world, and fall into the night. We give up control and surrender to darkness. We need to sleep; it's a biological necessity. This need for rest reminds us, every day, that we are dependent on the healing rhythms of nature.
There are rhythms during sleep. Your body follows an ultradian rhythm of about ninety minutes, in which you sleep deeply for about eighty minutes, then dream for ten minutes. This goes on all night or for however long you sleep.
Sleep is a mini-death and a journey. Consciousness leaves the body and travels wherever it wants. Boundaries dissolve and we become part of the universal body, the cosmos, the Great Unknown. The connection between sleep and death is a timeless mystery, and the subject of much musing in all spiritual practices.
When we sleep, we enter the realm of the soul, the unconscious, the world of dreams. Anything can happen in the dreamworld. The soul is a wild adventurer, a trickster, a magician; we can see or be anybody, see or do surprising, even horrifying things. The improvisations of the unconscious are inspiring and utterly humbling, exposing our deepest desires, urges, and fears.
Falling asleep can be a profound meditation on letting go. We can learn to appreciate not only the exquisite relaxation of falling asleep but also the deep relief of releasing our daytime selves. We let go of activity, we let go of our persona, our body identity, the particulars of our lives, and all the ways we are localized in time and place.
Freed from the container of the skin, consciousness melts into eternity, and spreads into infinity for a few hours. We die to the world, drift and dream. Then in the morning we somehow make our way back, condensing into this body, this time, this family, this spot on Earth, this life.
When we fall asleep, we can give ourselves something wonderful to fall into; we can fall into love. The depth of meditation comes from letting yourself be with something you love, and then falling into the experience. When we fall asleep, we fall in anyway, so we may as well succumb to what we love.
Many spiritual teachings describe the state beyond death as love itself, the divine force that connects everything in the universe. When we let go of identity, let go of thought, let go of life as we know it, we are left with the essence of love. Discovering what that feels like for you can be tremendously transformative.
Preparing for sleep can be a prayer, a blessing, a peace offering to the unknown. We forgive everything and everyone. We forgive ourselves. We surrender to love.
Fall into Sleep Practice
When: Preparing to sleep at night.
Where: Lying in bed.
Time: 6 minutes.
There are three parts to this meditation: Review and Release; Get Cozy; Fall into Love.
Listen to "FALL INTO SLEEP"
From MEDITATION 24/7: Practices to Enlighten Every Moment of Your Day
Copyright 2004, Camille Maurine and Lorin Roche, Ph.D.
Book with CD from Andrews McMeel Publishing
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photo: René Armenta