By Shafiya Eve
You can experience a restorative rest whether it’s five minutes in the recliner, ten minutes on your lunch break in the car or a half hour or more in bed. Transcendental Napping (T-Nap®) can maximize the quality of your rest and rejuvenation and may even offer a lovely mystical experience to boot.
My preferred position is lying down on my back. I usually put a fat long pillow under my knees and a small pillow under my head but if you are in your car, just make do, whatever is most comfortable for you in your environment. If it’s daytime, I sometimes add a dark piece of cloth across my eyes.
It’s quite simple. Close your eyes and be aware of the light you see. No matter how dark it is, there is always light. It may be shapeless, formless, diffused light, kind of like a very deep fog. For me, sometimes the light is very still, other times it swirls into mystical realms. The trick is just watching it without thinking about it, without letting your imagination run away with you. Just be aware of the light you are perceiving. I like to add a measure of wonderment into the awareness. Here the difference between awareness and thinking will become obvious. The thinking mind and mindful awareness are two distinctly different phenomena.
The mind will drift. The thinking mind which was meant to be our servant has enslaved us with its none-stop analysis, useless imaginings and judgments. When you recognize you’ve gone off on a mental tangent, quietly and peacefully bring your attention back to the light. No chastisement, no “there I go again.” Without a thought let it go and come back to the light.
The first thing I notice when T-Napping are my eyes relaxing, then the jaw releases and my shoulders drop and the back of my throat will soften and feels like it is opening up – sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. Other relaxation responses will follow. I am mindful when the relaxation responses gain my attention to simply let go of the thinking about it, just appreciating the mindfulness of the shift and coming back to seeing the light, to the awareness of light in the dark.
One of my favorite things that happens is I’ll relax to the point that I hear myself snoring. I consider this a highlight in the (T-Nap) technique. I often have clients while receiving Reiki who will hear themselves snoring. It’s always a good indication of the depth of their relaxation and sacred experience. Many of us snore in our usual sleep patterns but we rarely hear ourselves snoring (unless our bed companion gives us a good nudge). This occurs in both the T-Nap and a Reiki session when the mind and the body have gone into such a deep state of restful relaxation yet still maintains its’ Awareness. It is through one’s awareness that the snoring is perceived.
I love experimenting. Sometimes I’ll do a body scan I just notice the various rhythms of different areas of my body then bring all my attention to the sacred heart center, being in awareness of the heart rhythm as a focus and before long my entire body will come into unity with that rhythm.
Just be mindful when experimenting that awareness is the goal, not thinking. Slipping into the thinking mind is natural. It’s had its way with us for many lifetimes. Just gently bring your attention to the awareness.
Take a T-Nap, rest and find yourself rejuvenated.