Dealing With Strong Emotions Part 2
Ex 11x Developing Our Sensitivity to Energy
Introduction to Energy Sensitivity
We are all naturally sensitive to energy, though the degree to which we are varies dramatically. The reason most do not "see" it is that they have tuned their attention elsewhere and allowed whatever sensitivity they do have to atrophy. Fortunately we can reacquaint ourselves with this aspect of our consciousness and our main ally is persistence. Every time we try to still our thoughts, to be more in the moment, to observe without labelling and allow what we are aware of to be there without contemplating and so on we are facilitating this.
Our sensitivity to energy has two main components, first being able to set aside our thoughts or limit our attention and second we work on the faculty that enables us to perceive subtle vibrations.
Minimum 30 minutes with 10 minutes for getting into a meditative state. I recommend at least 30 minutes with no maximum time as you can do this exercise for as long as you can maintain both a meditative state and your focus.
While I recommend you do all the readings and exercises before doing this one it is more a matter of getting the most out of it than anything else. The essays are not overly long and the exercises can be done over the period of a few days. They will help you to become familiar with each of them and do not have to think about them when doing this exercise. Otherwise there is the potential for one to become frustrated should you not have any success in perceiving energy. Frustration leads to resistance, which can hold you back. Developing our sensitivity is challenging enough without adding extra work onto our plate.
Two of the key elements in being sensitive to energy are that we are able to use the Law of Limitation (1) to focus our attention and second we exercise it to build up our "awareness muscles". A factor in limiting our attention is our beliefs. For instance, beliefs such as doubt that one can perceive energy, that you are able to do it or that it silly to do and so on act as blocks not only to the energy but to your ability to limit your attention.
It can take years to develop our sensitivity, however, if you are persistent you will gradually begin to notice "things" you never did before. Normally when people perceive things they immediately begin to consider what is perceived and then the mind integrates what it perceives. A clear mind does not get in the way of our perceptions; however, unless you were born with this in some significant measure it is a skill you develop through regular and consistent practice. The following phrase says it better than I can:
“You should sit in meditation for 20 minutes a day, unless you’re too busy. In that case, you should sit for an hour.” –Zen Proverb
As you go through this exercise, and others like it, do your best to set aside desires to think about what you perceive. By that I mean do not try to label, understand, categorize, analyse or otherwise define it. Just allow it, and I do not mean to think about allowing, I mean try to simply "be" as best you can.
Get yourself into a meditative posture so that you are comfortable enough to not be distracted by the need to shift around to get more comfortable and where it is quiet and will not be disturbed. It also helps to meditate when you have time to set aside for it as our minds will often find ways to keep us busy which does not help our meditation.
Before you begin read the exercise through so that you do not have to stop to read as this will obviously break your focus. It is critical to maintain your meditative posture throughout the exercise.
Once you are in a meditative posture I recommend grounding yourself, clearing your energy and then center yourself so that you are in a balanced and very relaxed state of mind. This is what I do at the beginning of every meditation and if you do it regularly it takes next to no time at all to complete.
When you are fully in a meditative posture and are done grounding, clearing and centering continue to quiet your mind as much as you can. When you have done this visualize something such as a colour or a shape. Doing this exercise with a colour is easier and in some ways better than a shape as a shape is more distinctive and you will still need to apply a colour to the shape you visualize or you will not be able to "see" it. If you choose a shape make it as simple as possible such as a circle or an oval rather than a square or a triangle and try to pick one. You can alter the visualization in subsequent meditations.
Focus your attention as much as possible on the visualization of it rather than the words that describe it. For instance if you visualize the colour blue, focus on visualizing “blue” and not on thinking "blue". Continue to do so until you barely or no longer think blue but merely perceive blue as best you can. Do not expect to do so the first time or the first few times you do this exercise as reducing our attention to only one thought or even a few thoughts takes many hours of practice. Even still, you should notice that you “see” flashes of blue but do not concern yourself if you do not.
Do continue to try to perceive blue without thinking it though in at this point it does not matter whether you perceive the colour or shape without engaging your mind or not. It is highly unlikely, without considerable effort and time, that you can experience blue without ANY thoughts about it whatsoever. Even realizing that it is “blue”, which is what we do when we label it, is a reaction to and hence a thought about it. The goal is to try to focus as much of our attention on perceiving “blue” without thinking “blue” or any other thought as we possibly can.
As you perceive it try to notice the feel of the vibration you perceive as blue. By feel I do not mean an emotional response to the thought or visualization of “blue”, though it is likely you will have one as most have some thoughts about it such as varying degrees of “like or dislike”. Such thoughts will mask the vibration of the “blue” and as a result what you will “feel” will be a combination of energies even though what we are trying to do is feel the energy of the vibration “blue”. And I use the term feel loosely for how you perceive it may be as atone or sound or any one of a number of ways. At this stage it is not important that you are able to isolate the feel of the “blue” or the energy of the visualization you are manifesting (remember that even a visualization of blue in our minds eye is “something” else we would not be able to perceive it). What is important is that you try to do this with as little thinking as possible.
Note that the individual energy of the “blue” you are trying to perceive is not strong as this is a simple thought rather than a composite or conceptual or complex one (7). What you are more likely to notice, certainly at first, is not only the energy of “blue” but your reaction to it as well or your thoughts about the colour blue. Regardless, try to remember the feel you perceived.
Be patient with yourself for it is not likely you have tried such an act before nor spent much time quieting your mind down enough to be sensitive to a single though or even a small group of thoughts. Also realize that expectations are also an impediment to our sensitivity.
This is a continuation of the previous step. It is one thing to visualize a single colour; however, the mind may not accept that our act is what allowed us to perceive blue let alone that we manifested the vibration of blue we perceived. To do this we need to reinforce the notion. We can work towards this by visualizing another colour and getting the same results. So, once you've completed Step 2 clear your attention so that "blue" is no longer prominent and re-center yourself. When you have done this pick another colour and repeat the exercise.
Do not try to hurry the process as that engages the mind, which interferes. If you find yourself rushing redo Step 1 to get back into a good meditative posture before continuing. Once you have done it with a second colour again clear the colour from your attention and go through the same process with another colour. Keep repeating this process with different colours. You can repeat a colour after having done a few different ones.
Continue to do this step until you can visualize and perceive a colour and also switch between colours quickly. Going through this process develops the ability to clear our attention, improves focus, builds confidence and helps trains the mind to get out of the way. You should not proceed to subsequent steps until you develop some proficiency at this one.
Now that you have your perception of the energy a simple thought or at least of a small group of thoughts, as well as your reactions to it, change your visualization to a more complex object of some kind (ex. Car, house, building, desk, road and so on). Repeat the same process with this object as you did with the simpler one in Step 2. Pick one object and stick with it so that you do not waffle between objects and thereby get a mix of energies as well as the thoughts you will have doing so. At the same time as you are visualizing the new object try to notice any shift in what you feel from what you remember feeling with the simpler thought construct in Step 2. Again, you will also have some thoughts about the object; do not be concerned about this.
The shift will be subtle and likely unnoticeable the first few times you do this exercise. In fact at first you may not even have been able to notice the vibration of the thought “blue” let alone a shift; again the first few times you do this exercise noticing the energy is not relevant, trying to notice it is. What you want to try to notice in this step is any differences between the simpler and more complex thought forms. In particular you might notice differences in strength, the feel or tone of the energy, and how you react to the thought. The more complex the thought form the more associated thoughts there will be about it so you will have memories related to and thoughts about it, including how you feel about it. Do note that this is not an exam or test so do not push yourself to notice the differences to the point where you get frustrated or anxious about perceiving vibrations or noticing anything at all is counter productive. If you find this happening take a few minutes to once again ground, clear and center yourself.
Again, try not to allow the thoughts about it to grab your attention, allow the vibrations the visualization stirs to be there with as little consideration as possible. After you have noticed the differences focus your attention on the new visualization so that it dominates your “attention”. Do not think of the word over and over again, instead visualize it without words as best as you can.
Do all you can so that you give your visualization your undivided attention. As mentioned do not do so forcibly rather notice when you mind tries to interject or your attention wanders and turn it back to it. You entered the meditation with the sole purpose of doing the exercise and chose a time when you were free to do so hence nothing should matter to you at this point except the exercise. Further, try to stay grounded and centered as this is not a test and you cannot pass or fail the exercise. When you feel you have done this make note of the energy you feel and remember it. Do so even if you are not sure that what you feel is from the energy of what you are visualizing.
In this step we continue the process by picking a more complex thought form from the previous two. This time pick a conceptual thought rather than one about “a thing”. This would include such thoughts as government, country, organization, business and so on. As in Step 3, when you start to shift to this new visualization try to notice any changes in what you feel or perceive. Do not dwell on it, simply note it and continue to visualize the concept you have chosen until the old visualization is gone and the new one has your full attention. Notice I do not say to think about it, we can focus our attention without thinking though we are not accustomed to doing so.
When you have visualized your conceptual thoughts you may notice a difference between the thought of a simple object and a far more complex one. The primary reason is such thoughts are far more connected to and have many relationships with other thoughts than those of “simple objects”. This will activate many of the thoughts that are connected to the object you have chosen. For example, most people have strong opinions about governments, so when you try to visualize governments they will be activated and will cause more resonance at the emotional level bring in emotional feelings. Try to not let these vibrations get you to start thinking words. Stay focused on the concept you have chosen.
As explained in Step 3, once this visualization is strong and other thoughts or visualizations have been set aside try to remember the overall feel of what you perceive.
In this last step we are going to choose to try to visualize that which is at the limits or beyond our capabilities to comprehend such as infinity, the beginning of “time”, the nature of consciousness, the meaning of life or the sound of one hand clapping. When you do this notice the shift in the energy or vibrations you perceive. You may notice the shift when you try to visualize or imagine the concept, even with very little practice. This is because such concepts tend to engage the higher aspect of our minds and such concepts are highly connected to other thoughts.
After you notice the shift you should then continue to focus your attention on your visualization or imagination of whatever you chose. Again what you are trying to do is to try to feel the vibration of what you are visualizing rather than think about them consciously.
You are done the exercise but do not end your meditation quickly because it can have a negative effect on you energy and cause some distress. As stated in the essay on meditation (2):
“Meditation raises your vibrancy rate. As a result, when you are ready to stop and return to normal awareness do so slowly. I start by using my rational mind a little more and reconnecting to my physical body first through perception then through little movements. Depending on how long the meditation is it can take up to ten minutes for me to get back to waking consciousness and be physically active. My focus is on a gradual and relaxed return to waking consciousness, I am mindful of not being in a hurry.”
As mentioned above this exercise is intended to help you expand your awareness. After you have done it you still may feel that you did nothing especially if you were unable to feel the energy of the various visualizations or the transitions between them. This is perfectly normal and I encourage you to not concern yourself with what you may feel is your lack of ability. It takes time to develop sensitivity and our thoughts can continue to block our perception of subtle energies unlike our physical senses. By this I mean that while thoughts generally do not prevent us from seeing with our eyes we all know that what we notice is certainly affected by what we are thinking.
When it comes to developing our awareness what we are trying to do is akin to trying to walk with legs you cannot see or feel. The fact is most people spend next to no time whatsoever trying to perceive the subtle vibrations. I have examined this at length in numerous essays, but to summarize it is because most do not actually believe beyond any significant doubt that everything is comprised of energy in various states and relationships, that consciousness is the foundation of our existence or that everything is interconnected. In addition the external world is very compelling and consumes virtually all of our attention.
Be mindful that developing our non-rational awareness takes a great deal of dedication and significant changes in the way one thinks and acts. You are not likely to develop them without frequent and regular effort. Further, selfishness, greed, anger, malice, guilt, blame and so forth block access to such awareness’s and impedes the gifts of those who have them.
A side benefit to this exercise and others like it is that when we start to shift the kinds of thoughts we have and where we place our attention we also start to take down the barriers that have us reacting in selfish ways. We may not even spend much time consciously trying to do so because acts such as this meditation and working on the thoughts in our mental house make a difference. They do so because our non-conscious mind takes its cues from our self-conscious awareness and when we start to care less about the needs and desires of our mind or ego our attention turns towards our connectivity to ALL. It is far harder to be angry at someone when you feel connected to them. Such connections start to bring in empathy and compassion which start to shine a light on the dark places in our minds and developing these qualities helps our awareness immensely!
© 2013 Allan Beveridge
Last updated: February 8, 2017
References ((*- denotes essays only available to site members):