ConcentrationIf you are just beginning to meditate, start by developing the power of concentration. Otherwise, the moment you try to make your mind calm and vacant, millions of uncomely thoughts will enter into you and you will not be able to meditate even for one second. If you can concentrate for a few minutes each day before entering into meditation, it clears away obstacles and helps you make rapid progress.
Concentration means inner vigilance and alertness. When we concentrate, we are like a bullet entering into something or we are like a magnet pulling the object of concentration toward us. At that time, we do not allow any thought to enter into our mind, whether it is good or bad. In concentration the entire mind has to be focused on a particular object or subject. If we are concentrating on a flower, we try to feel that nothing else exists in the entire world but ourself and the flower. Concentration is not an aggressive way of looking into an object. Far from it! This concentration comes directly from the soul, from the soul's indomitable will power.
Very often I hear aspirants say that they cannot concentrate for more than five minutes. After five minutes they get a headache or their head is on fire. Why? It is because the power of their concentration is coming from the intellectual mind, or, you can say, from the disciplined mind. The mind knows that it must not wander; that much knowledge the mind has. But if the mind is to be utilised properly, in an illumined way, then the light of the soul has to come into it. When the light of the soul has entered into the mind, it is extremely easy to concentrate on something for hours and hours. During this time there can be no thoughts or doubts or fears. No negative forces can enter into the mind if it is surcharged with the soul's light.
When you concentrate, you have to feel that your power of concentration is coming from the heart centre and then going up to the third eye. The heart centre is where the soul is located. When you think of the soul at this time, it is better not to form any specific idea of it or try to think of what it looks like. Only you will think of it as God's representative or as boundless light and delight. So when you concentrate, you try to feel that the soul's light is coming from the heart and passing through the third eye. Then, with this light, you enter into the object of concentration and identify with it. The final stage of concentration is to discover the hidden ultimate truth in the object of concentration.