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The art and skill of relaxation

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  • Swami Jnaneshvara Bharati
    The art and skill of relaxation http://www.swamij.com/breath.htm (for more info) Relaxation is a skill unto itself. Relaxation involves the body and mind,
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 7, 2004
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      The art and skill of relaxation
      http://www.swamij.com/breath.htm
      (for more info)

      Relaxation is a skill unto itself.

      Relaxation involves the body and mind, along with the interaction
      between the two. There are many things one can do to relax, including
      physical and social activities, entertainment, or specific methods of
      relaxation and meditation, such as with music or guided imagery.

      However, most of these are based on a strategy of diverting attention
      away from the inner activity of the body and mind. This is true for
      the external distractions and most of the inner visualizations that
      might be mere fantasies. One becomes absorbed in the secondary
      activity solely for the purpose of blocking awareness of other
      thoughts, such as of the thoughts of today's actions and yesterday's
      memories. This strategy of diverting attention is useful to some
      extent, but it does not go far enough.

      It is better to learn the art and skill of directly relaxing than to
      merely distract the mind.

      What is really needed is to train oneself in the skill, the art of
      relaxing directly, without needing to create a distraction for the
      mind. This is a tricky point to understand, since it is also a good
      idea to focus the mind for relaxation. However, there is an underlying
      skill itself, that of directly knowing how to relax, to let go of the
      thought patterns in the mind, and in turn let go of the tension that
      is being held in the body.

      The key principle in learning to directly relax is in moving the
      attention through different aspects of one's own being. This might be
      attention on aspects of the physical body, the breath, or the mental
      process. This principle is intertwined in the practical explanations
      that follow:
      http://www.swamij.com/breath.htm
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