Dr Peter Gruenewald, MD
In times of challenge and threat for the wellbeing, life and development of individuals, humanity, and earth, practicing the ‘Abundant Life Meditation’, can be a means of strengthening ourselves as individuals and communities against the detrimental effects of permanent extreme emotions, such as fear, hatred and doubt and helps us to develop and maintain creative and dynamic relationships with ourselves, others, and nature. More than ever, we need a daily effective meditative practice, to develop the qualities of Freedom and Love and to develop an enlightened thinking (wisdom), a soul warming feeling (love) and an enlivening, rejuvenating and creative will (power).
By practicing this meditation, our raw emotions, such as anxiety, fear, anger, frustration, and sadness, which when experienced permanently, undermine our physical emotional and mental health, can be permanently transformed into rejuvenating and profoundly health promoting feelings, such as courage, gratitude, appreciation, compassion, love, and enthusiasm. During this process, our thinking becomes more insightful, and our will stronger and more capable to manifest our ideas (creativity). Focusing our thinking, feeling and will power once or twice daily for 15 minutes, on inspired sentences (mantras) that relate to our human developmental potential, can help us to gradually transform and overcome even longstanding personal problems. We learn to overcome destructiveness in our will, coldness in our feeling, and darkness in our thinking.
The below outline meditative path of creating an abundant life doesn't only support our own personal and developmental needs, but also supports the developmental needs of our close (e.g. family, friends, working colleagues, neighbours) and wider communities (e.g. church, organisations, country), of humanity and of our planet. It assists in growing responsibility and influence beyond our own personal life towards wholeheratedly including humanity and earth.
In your preparation, at the start of your meditation, approach 'Abundant Life', the inner and outer source of creation, with appreciation and love.
Purposefully, in your mind, invite those people into you meditation that you care for. You may also include nature, humanity and the whole earth, if you wish too.
Ask 'Abundant Life' to extend the benefit of your breathing meditation onto everyone and everything, you wish to included into your meditation.
The coherence breathing (Resonant Frequency Training) is health promoting, as it strengthens the body rhythms which are essential to keep our physiology in balance and maintain our health and youthfulness, right into old age. Rhythmic breathing influences and regulates all other body rhythms, such as the sleeping and waking rhythm the feasting and fasting rhythm, the activity and rest cycles. The conscious regulation of our breathing rhythm can influence all body rhythms positively and contributes towards health creation and maintenance.
By involving the whole lung, from the diaphragm upwards to the middle part of and the top of the lungs (whole chest breathing), and making inhalation and exhalation equally long, we balance and harmonise the functions of our autonomic nervous system (sympathetic – fight or flight and parasympathetic – freeze and faint). This improved balance of the autonomic nervous system reflects on a physiological level in increased heart rate variability, which is also a measure for increased health potential, flexibility, and youthfulness of our body.
On a psychological level this balance shows in improved emotion regulation; in the capacity to transform negative emotions, such as anxiety, fear, anger, shame, sadness etc. into higher feelings such as love, appreciation, gratitude, enthusiasm, courage, and compassion, and in a heightened flexibility of our thinking and improved adaptability of our actions.
Sun Light, Warmth and Life flow into your heart with each inhalation, and into your body periphery with each exhalation. Light of the Sun symbolises Wisdom; Warmth of the Sun symbolises Love; and Life of the Sun symbolises Power.
As you inhale, connect with your inner world, focus simultaneously on the mantra: "Abundant Life creates in Us"
As you exhale, connect with the world around you, focus on the other mantra: "We create our Abundant Life"
As you practice coherence breathing, keep inhalation and exhalation equally long, whilst gradually slowing down the breathing process gradually (no slower than 5 breathing cycles per minute, which equates six seconds of inhalation and six seconds of exhalation). The time between inhalation and exhalation and between exhalation and inhalation is shortened and hardly perceivable. This gives a sense of a circular breathing, where inhalation and exhalation and exhalation and inhalation gently flow into each other. Slowing down and deepening of breathing should take place very gently, and gradually, as any forced change of breathing rhythm or depth of breathing may cause the physiological correlate of little shocks and can therefore have a negative impact. Over days and weeks of practice slowing down and deepening of breathing will come naturally and will not feel forced at all.
The regulated breathing process and the rhythmic change between the contracting and expanding sphere of the sun adds to the power of breathing. This dynamic visualisation should be maintained throughout the exercise.
Silently speaking the mantras (inspired sentences) with every inhalation and exhalation, supported by slow and deep, rhythmic whole chest breathing, allows to connect with (truth and wisdom; beauty and love; goodness and power on a deeper level.
As we silently repeat these mantras, we should experience them not only as a thought content, but penetrate them with our love and enthusiasm, and with strong intentionality.
Once you bring the exercise to an end, eliminate all your thoughts, images, feelings, and intentions from your consciousness, and try to maintain your consciousness empty, for a few moments that can over time can be extended to a few minutes. If you get distracted by thought or images, refocus on your breathing, and then try to rest in your regained “empty” consciousness.
Outside your meditation, contemplate how loving and living your Abundant Life transforms you; your and other's destiny, your relationships with others and your relationship to nature.
During your contemplation, penetrate your thoughts with feelings of enthusiasm, courage, love, and devotion and with strong will and intentions.
"We" and "Us": The mantras use the term “we” and “us”, rather than “I” and “me”. As important as it is to meditate to connect to and strengthen our relationship with our higher self, there is also much virtue in focusing in our meditation on our loved ones, our community or even the world community as a whole (humanity).
In order to enhance the effect of this meditation, you can after some practice replace the dynamic visualisation of the contracting and expanding sun sphere with the use of two symbols: The Seal of Solomon (six pointed star) and the TAU Cross. During meditation, both symbols are imaginatively projected into the body and the focus shifts from from symbol to the other in synchronicity with inhalation and exhalation. This variation of the meditation can be found in the 'Meditation' Section (Mastery of Life - 2) of this website.
The famous psychiatrist C. G. Jung believed that mental and vital energy are created through the conflict of opposites. In Jung's view, the alchemical attempt to transmute base metals into gold and silver (with the help of the philosopher's stone) was actually a psychological process. The symbols used by the alchemists were representative of what he termed the process of individuation: personal growth and full integration and mastership of conflicting functions within our conscious, subconscious and unconscious mind. ;One must bring the opposites into balance and complete union in order to gain emotional and physical health, and to succeed in the integration of the conscious, subconscious and unconscious mind after which the one’s true Self emerges. In alchemy, this union is known as the 'conjunctio', the 'Royal Wedding'. It represents the union of opposites, and, more specifically, the union of Queen and King, 'anima' and 'animus', our inner male and female aspects. It is the unifying of our higher Self, our human spirit (King) with the purified human soul (Queen), but also the unifying of the spirit of nature (King) with the human consciousness (Queen). As a result one’s inner and outer life becomes integrated and balanced and one enters into a state of great peace, tranquility, wisdom, love, empowerment, youthfulness and health. Jung claims that this is the pure gold (King) and silver (Queen) the alchemists wanted to create with the help of the Philosopher’s Stone (black water).
In order to succeed in this process, the inner animal nature, our unregulated emotions, such as anxiety, fear, anger, sadness, despair, and our animals desires, both represented by the lion, have to be transformed into higher feelings, such as love, compassion, enthusiasm and motives for our actions, that allow doing the good not only for ourselves, but also for others.In this process, the lower, unredeemed part of our human nature has to go through destruction (illness, crisis) and metaphysical death and to resurrection (rebirth) as higher Self (King) and purified soul (Queen), as we develop new faculties that can serve ourselves, our loved ones, our society and humanity. This process is experienced as purification and empowerment.
Both stories, Parabola Allegory: The Royal Wedding and The Temple Legend. Solomon and Hiram. are inspired and inspiring stories that depict human spiritual initiation ad development. Their multilayered meaning slowly reveals itself through daily listening and contemplating. Stories of this kind, authored by masters of spiritual development, do not only talk to the intellect but also to our feeling life and our deeper will nature, and have a similarly educational and transformational effect for adults, as inspired fairy tales have for young children.
Like daily meditative practice they can lead to an alignment and balancing of cognition, emotion and will and help develop wisdom, love and power, enabling us to deal with day to day challenges more appropriately and effectively and also to contribute positively towards the development of humanity.
They also help understand the deeper meaning of the symbols used in the 'Mastery of Life' Meditation and to connect with them on a deeper level.
Listening to this recording, once a day for 40 days, may help you to improve and maintain emotional and physical health, prevent and treat burnout, improve sleep and enhance creativity and performance, even under pressure. The programme can help you to initiate profound, positive changes. It may help you tackle many life problems by supporting the development of physical and emotional health, high performance, and the alignment of the conscious and unconscious mind with your body physiology. You may experience growing resilience, which will allow you to perform and stay well in crisis and under pressure. You can feel the benefit of this recording within days, and it may enhance all spheres of your life: personal, social and professional.
You'll fin the stories in the 'Meditation Section'.
For more information, please read the article: 'Abundant Life. Co-create your destiny.' on Merlian News.
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Rudolf Steiner. Goethean Science. Mercury Press. 1988. GA 001.
Rudolf Steiner. Six Steps in Self-Development: The “Supplementary Exercises”. Rudolf Steiner Press. 2011.
Rudolf Steiner. Love and its Meaning in the World. Zurich, 17th December 1912.
Rudolf Steiner. The Temple Legend. Lecture 20: The Royal Art in a New Form. Berlin, 2nd January, 1906
Edward Bulwer-Lytton. Vril, the Power of the Coming Race. 1871
Thoe Paijmans. Free Energy Pioneer: John Worrell Keely, 2004
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Saint Paul: 1 Corinthians 13. The Way of Love.
Peter Gruenwald. The Quiet Heart. Putting Stress in its Place. Floris Books. 2007.
Peter Gruenewald. Manifesting your Best Future Self. Adaptive Resilience. 2021.
Peter Gruenewald. Gold and the Philosopher's Stone. Temple Lodge Publishing.2002.
Henricus Madathanus: Parabola - Royal Wedding. c. 1660.
Photo: First Goetheanum in Dornach / Switzerland - Centre for Anthroposophy - designed by Rudolf Steiner - 1920 - 1923