"HOW TO MEDITATE." Caroline M. Levchuck, Jane Kelly Kosek, and Michele Drohan. Healthy Living. Allison McNeill, Editor. Farmington Hills, Mich.: UXL,
The first thing one needs to do is find a safe, quiet space where one will not be disturbed. (Meditation in bed is not recommended.) Sometimes people use a meditation cushion to sit on (this can simply be a pillow or couch cushion). Comfort is essential for meditation. Sitting in a chair, or against the wall if this is more comfortable, is fine, too. Having the feet fall asleep can get in the way of the practice.
Meditation begins by breathing. Breathing should be natural and one should try to be aware of each breath taken. Then the mantra should be repeated, over and over, slowly, in the mind. Obsessive thoughts may creep into the mind during meditation. Meditation teachers suggest that those starting a practice should try to let their thoughts go and use the metaphor of the movie screen. Some people like to pretend that their mind is a movie screen and that the thoughts passing are not their own. This is a good way to detach from painful thoughts. When people try to control their thoughts, or punish themselves for their thoughts, they have a lot of trouble with meditation. Gentle return to the mantra is suggested when thoughts stray. It is important not to get frustrated because thoughts will naturally stray. Twenty minutes per session is usually recommended, but five minutes is good for a starting practice. Healing may not be immediate with meditation, but recovering addicts who have learned to meditate report tremendous benefits from their practice.