Exalted Imagery Meditations
"The Golden Crown"
Picture in your mind's eye a golden crown, huge, several miles wide in the air high above you, directly over your head.
The crown is a circlet with rays pointing upwards. The gold is lustrous, brilliant in the sunlight.
Within the crown, embedded in it are precious gems. Picture these gems one type at a time. In other words, all rubies, all sapphires, topaz, diamonds, etc. See the light that is refracted through these gems, so that the rubies flood your visual space with their rose-colored light.
Feel the quality of the light and let it wash over you and fill you.
Visualize those gems that appeal to you, being careful not to overdo any one of them.
"Garland of Flowers"
Do the same exercise visualizing a garland of flowers instead of a crown. Again, very large in the sky above you.
Picture different kinds of flowers, each time seeing the garland composed of just that one kind of flower. You might begin with a white flower, such as gardenias or white roses, and then move to yellow or red roses, irises, or whatever kind of flower is pleasing to you.
See the color, feel the quality of the texture, and allow the fragrance to fill you completely. Luxuriate in the beauty, the fragrance, and the feeling of as many kinds of flowers that it takes to make the exercise feel complete.
Again, do not overdo any one of them.
Picture a huge candle, a beeswax candle of the best quality, filling the space above and in front of you. It is lit, and its light merges beautifully with the sunlight.
Notice the glow of the flame and the rays of light emanating from it. Especially notice how the light of the flame causes the upper portion of the beeswax to glow with its slightly amber color.
Feel the quality of this light and smell the aroma of the melting beeswax. Feel its texture and sense the radiation of the heat above the flame.
"Raising the Infant"
Picture and feel yourself filled with happiness and joy as you hold an infant high above and in front of you with your arms fully extended.
The feeling is one of exaltation and joy as you experience the wonder of life in the full light of the sun.
Don't see the infant as any particular infant (such as your own) but as all infants.
Release the infant and allow it to float in the air above you. See the infant and the sun become one so that the infant becomes the source of the sunlight in a warm and gentle radiance.
Feel the quality of the radiance and let it fill you. The feeling is one of pure, conscious awareness and an exalted feeling of joy and lightness.
All of the objects used in these exercises have deep archetypal significance and embody the energies of the experiences they generate.
The above meditations follow the pattern of the four kingdoms, namely the mineral, vegetable, animal (bees), and human:
- The medicinal and therapeutic value of certain metals and the colors produced by refracted light has long been known. Gold and precious gems are valuable not because they are pretty, but because of their unique and powerful vibrations.
- Likewise, the natural fragrances of flowers and herbs are valuable because of the responses they evoke in us, not simply because they smell nice. Roses, for example, stimulate the heart chakra.
- Bees are an ancient symbol. They show up frequently in Masonic and Catholic images, along with representations of the beehive. Altars in the Western Tradition are supposed to have elements from all four kingdoms. The animal kingdom is represented by the bee in the form of beeswax. The flame of the candle consumes the beeswax in the same way that the body metabolizes sugar in its cells, producing body heat. There are many references in the major religions of the world to the divine nature of fire. The sacrificial altars of the past were outward symbols of the never-ending cycle of life consuming itself for its own benefit and renewal.
- The Human Kingdom represented by the infant in "Raising the Infant" touches on the link that we as human beings form between heaven and earth. Much has been written on the specialness of "Man", the differences we possess that raise us "a little higher than the angels" and that give us "dominion over world". These concepts have become politically incorrect in recent years, because man has misused his powers over nature and has nearly destroyed it. But his misuse of the power only proves that he has it. Whether it is given by God or merely the result of an evolved self-awareness, there is no doubt that we have the collective ability (for good or ill) to affect the very systems that sustain us. The infant in this exercize represents us in our innocence as pure channels of light and wisdom, which is the way God created us to be. By focusing on our inherent purity, we dispell the darkness that has brought us to the brink of environmental and spiritual disaster.
Contemplating certain objects and their vibrations helps us acquire the ability to reproduce those vibrations within our consciousness. This in turn brings the experience that those vibrations invoke. Visualizing gold, for instance, causes us to feel more vitality, and the light refracted through certain gem stones can facilitate healing.
You might ask yourself where perception actually occurs? Do our eyes actually see anything or our noses actually smell anything? Just as a child learns by watching and imitating the adults around her, so does the brain experience the external world by reproducing the images and messages it receives from the mechanisms of the senses. The brain receives input from the senses and then builds a replica of the input on its 'workbench'. It is the replica that we see and smell and not the external object. If the thinking process is predisposed to certain tendencies or biases, the replica will reflect these and not the external object. The replica will be incomplete or imperfect and will show the distortions inherent in the thinker's prejudices. This concept is reflected in the Yoga Sutra that describes Yoga as "...the intentional stopping of the spontaneous activity of the mind substance."
Since the replica of the input of the senses is built out of the brain's own energies, the replica is solely the creation of the thinker. This is the reasoning behind the assertion that the world is an illusion. It is the thinker's creation, not the actual world, with which the thinker interacts. Any actions and reactions based on this falulty perception are thus "unreal" and will produce effects that can only confuse and distort the natural outworkings of the Law of Cause and Effect.
Jesus warns of this creative replication function of the thinker/brain when he said, "It is not what goes into the mouth but what comes out that defiles you." The brain's energies that replicate the external world are given shape and direction by our words. In the Creation story, Adam is given the task of naming all the animals. Adam represents our conscious thinking; the animals represent the energies of the brain. It is important, therefore, that we name things correctly and not dissimulate their meaning. When we misrepresent our experiences, i.e. lie to ourselves, we "bear false witness" and the brain gets confused. That which it cannot reconcile is repressed, only to show up later in unpredictable and disruptive ways.