In this meditation, based on a small fragment from Atisha, the founder of Tibetan Buddhism, you allow all the suffering – of yourself and of all the beings in the world – to ride on your incoming breath and reach your heart. The heart can do miracles, it immediately transforms the energy. You drink in misery, and it is transformed into blissfulness. Then, on your outgoing breath you pour that blissfulness into the whole existence.
The meditation has no fixed format; the format given below is one that works well to start with and you can adapt it as you like later on.
This meditation can be done with specific OSHO Heart Meditation music, which indicates and energetically supports the stages.
For the music availability, see below.
The meditation lasts 50 minutes and has four stages. During the first three stages you may stand, move, sit or lie down as happens for you naturally; eyes open or closed. The meditation is over when you hear three gong beats.
First Stage: 5 minutes
“Moving into the heart.”
Bringing your awareness to your body and breathing, feel yourself here and now.
Then bring your awareness to your heart chakra, the energy center inside the middle of your chest. If it helps you, place one or both hands on your heart center.
Absorb each in-breath into the heart, pour each out-breath out from the heart.
Second Stage: 15 minutes
“Begin with yourself.”
Start with your own misery, feel it with as much intensity as possible: the hurt, the wounds, and the suffering in your whole life. Accept it and welcome it.
Breathe in your misery… Absorb it into the heart… Let it be transformed there into joy, into bliss. Breathe out all the joy, the blissfulness; pour yourself into existence.
You may express in sounds, words, gestures and movements what is happening inside you or you may let it happen silently.
Third Stage: 15 minutes
“Include all the people in the world.”
Now expand this process. Take the whole misery of all beings, unconditionally – friends, enemies, family, strangers. Accept and welcome it.
Breathe in all this misery and hell… Absorb it into the heart… Let it be transformed there into joy, into bliss. Breathe out all the joy, the blissfulness; pour yourself into existence.
You may express in sounds, words, gestures and movements what is happening inside you or let it happen silently.
Fourth Stage: 15 minutes
Now completely withdraw your attention from the world, from others, even from yourself.
Lie down, close your eyes, be silent and still.
Once you experience how pain and suffering can be transformed into joy through the breath and heart, you may like to apply this method silently whenever people and events around you trigger the process.
For full details about this meditation, see: The Book of Wisdom, #1 and #5, by Osho
Osho explains about this meditation:
“It is one of the greatest methods. When you breathe in, think that you are breathing in all the miseries of all the people in the world. All the darkness, all the negativity, all the hell that exists anywhere, you are breathing it in. Let it be absorbed in your heart.
“This is the method of compassion: drink in all the suffering and pour out all the blessings.
“You will be surprised if you do it. The moment you take all the sufferings of the world inside you, they are no longer sufferings. The heart immediately transforms the energy. The heart is a transforming force: drink in misery, and it is transformed into blissfulness. Then pour it out.
“Once you have learned that your heart can do this magic, this miracle, you will like to do it again and again. Try it. It is one of the most practical methods – simple, and it brings immediate results. Do it today and see.”
“And before you can do this with the whole of existence you will have to start first with yourself. This is one of the fundamental secrets of inner growth. You cannot do anything with others that you have not done in the first place with yourself.
“Whatsoever you can do with others, you must have done to yourself before because that is the only thing that you can share. You can share only that which you have; you cannot share that which you don’t have.”