I started my meditation journey several years ago. I was going through a difficult time and looking for a way to cope with the stress in my life at the time. I was also on a search to find myself and looking for something real to believe in. Unfortunately, like most things there isn’t a one size fits all for meditators. It takes some time to figure out what works best for you mind and your body. Even with more than five years under my belt, I still use a variety of methods to find my center.
One method in particular that I am a huge advocate for is candle meditation. Candle meditation allows me to focus on a single focal point that ties to a specific area in my life. For beginners, this is an easy way to get started. You simply bring your awareness to the candle and each time your mind drifts, you can refocus your attention on the candle or the candle’s flame. Rather than trying to stop thoughts from running through your mind, you simply provide yourself with a focal point to concentrate on. Candle meditation can also be done by setting an intention and lighting a candle while you relax to music or in your sacred space.
My personal preference is chakra candle meditation. Chakras are subtle energy centers that surround the body. There are seven major centers that relate to specific areas in our life. There is also a color associated with each chakra. Each color has its own meaning as well.
Even if you have reservations about the idea of subtle energy centers, candles can still be useful for spending quiet time reflecting on the ideas they represent. Prior to sitting down, I take a moment to think about the area in my life I’d like to focus on. Then I light the candle related to that area. In most instances, I chose to focus on the heart chakra which resonates with love, compassion and being open to giving/receiving. Below are some instructions on how to get your candle meditation session started.
Find a comfortable quiet space, close the window shades or turn down the lights. Place the lit candle on a table across the room. The flame should be at eye level or in a place that makes it easy to see without causing strain. Slowly began to gaze at the flame and allow it to occupy your mind. Your mind may initially wonder and your eyes may not remain still for you to focus. This is normal and will improve over time. Feel free to blink as needed but shift your awareness back to the candles and let go of any thoughts or distractions. Hold the meditation for 2-5 minutes then relax and focus on your breathing.
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