Weekly Contemplations to Ignite the Soul
No. 7: Reaction vs. Response
Do you remember the last time you were angry? Did the anger come on suddenly? What was the trigger?
There is a world of difference between a reaction to a given situation and a response to it. Reactivity is an instantaneous emotional uprising within oneself as a result of an outer stimulus while a response requires a moment’s pause and an element of thoughtfulness as you determine the most appropriate response.
In reacting, there is a loss of center. In responding, you maintain your center.
Meditation: Calming the Emotions
One of the lessons I learned from the great Swami Veda Bharati is that a Heart Centered Meditation calms the emotions. It is a highly effective practice for those times when you find yourself emotionally off balance.
1. Find a seated position with an erect spine and both feel firmly planted on the ground.
2. Focus on your nostril breathing and the mantra peace, harmony, well-being or So Ham until your mind begins to calm.
3. From the forehead center, look down into the cave of the heart and visualize a flame of light in the center of the hear chakra. Repeat your mantra as if it is emanating from the center of the flame. Dwell here.
4. After a few minutes bring the attention back up to the Ajna Chakra (forehead center). Rest here as you gaze within.