The Practice of Antar Mouna

This is a basic practice of classical Yoga, but in truth it probably is a fundamental technique for anyone wanting to explore the ‘inner world’ without too much distraction from the thoughts. As Swamiji says, we are human, we need to think to live in the world. But in the context of meditation we need some inner silence in order to understand that we are not our thoughts, in order to find an aware Presence when thoughts subside.

Antar Mouna use sensory impressions in the first stage . We see that those sensory impressions do not need to be obstructions to the practice of meditation. They are necessary for every day life, but they can also be a means for bringing us into this present moment. This is because sensory impressions happen right here in the present whereas thoughts can be in the past or the future, and often are.

all animals are conscious but awareness brings
the added dimension that we know
that we are conscious, and we identify
with the fact that we are conscious.

The way that Swamiji presents this Antar Mouna actually relates the sensations of hearing and feeling, even taste and smell, back to the sense of inner spaciousness which is a stepping stone to to simple awareness of consciousness. In fact Swamiji brings in a definition of awareness and consciousness here:

The first stage of Antar Mouna uses the senses, start the track below to listen.

Then a discussion on this and the following practice of stage two. It’s also a preamble to the further development of antar mouna up to stage five. Some include a further stage six.

Another practice session follows, this time the first two stages of Antar Mouna using the senses in stage one, and thoughts in stage two.

Day two starts with a development of the first two stages.

‘thoughts feelings and emotions
are not entities, they are
flows of energy’.

Then a discussion on the second and third stages of the practice. Swamiji raises the issue of “are they our thoughts”; he suggests that thoughts are universal but we mistakenly take possession, ownership of them.

The final practice session explores stage 3, the selection of specific thoughts to focus intently on, before releasing them. Again Swamiji advocates the recognition of the space within as a backdrop to the thought process.

All sound editing and website by Tony Sugden / Narada

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