As a young man, raised in the Baptist Church, I was taught to be wary of different religious beliefs and practices. In 2010, I entered Morehouse College, the alma mater of Martin Luther King Jr., holding on to belief that involving myself with any other religion was blasphemous. My perspective changed during my last year at Morehouse. Despite my background and upbringing, I chose to study theology (the study of the nature of God and religious belief) for my last six months at Morehouse.
The experience was enlightening. I was encouraged by my professors and peers to explore the traditions and beliefs of other religions. Through studying, seeking, praying and listening I was able to understand that all religions are truly interconnected, centered around the ultimate divine being and energy force, God. Knowing that my God, the father of Jesus Christ, was also the ultimate source for all other religions and traditions, I felt at peace. My perspective of Jesus Christ did not change nor shift, it was simply expanded. This new perspective was solidified for me during my time at Harvard Divinity School in a diversity exploration program. I spent a week at Harvard Divinity School experiencing different religions sharing beliefs and practicing traditions together, in peace and harmony.
A major aspect of what I'll call "my expansion" was learning how to meditate. Through my studies, experiences, trials, successes and failures, I was able to understand the power of meditation and utilize this tradition to deepen my spiritual connection to Jesus Christ.
So at this point, you're probably thinking, "Wow! He's dead on!" Or you may be thinking, "Ok, this is different." Either way, I wanted to share 6 quicks steps for a Christian that may be hesitant but interested in meditation. Please be aware that everyone has their own individual path. This article is simply me sharing mine with the intent to provide a light for others.
1. Make yourself comfortable. Sit erect, with your spine straight, your feet firmly planted on the floor, your hands relaxed in your lap, and breath normally. There is no mystical or occult reason for this, it is very simple when your body is perfectly comfortable one is not conscious of it. Take a breath and count to four. Breathe in and out four or five times counting to quiet your mind. Breathe normally.
2. Say "I turn within to the Christ of my own being".
3. Ask yourself "What is God?" and receive the answer from God. The kingdom of God is within you. Say to yourself, "Speak Lord, thy servant heareth, or "Father, I am here, speak."
4. Assume a listening attitude as if you were waiting to hear the answer. Thoughts may come. Think about God as the source of our being and all this is, Omnipresent, Omnipotent, and Omniscient.
5. Someday, while meditating and pondering this idea, "What is God?" realizing now the nature of prayer, you will suddenly find that you cannot think anymore; you have come to the end of thought about God and prayer. Then you will sit there, quietly, at peace, no more thoughts, no more questions, no more answers, just peace. Thoughts will be quieted, the inner ear will open and a long deep breath like a sigh of relief or a sense of release will probably come to you. It is as if you were escaping from something; as if a burden were dropping off your shoulders. It will appear in many different ways, and when that release or relief comes, you will be so full of the Spirit that you will get right up and do the work that lies ahead for the day, or perhaps some work that has been neglected. With that release will come divine wisdom, divine guidance, and divine strength, for this reason, that deep breath, the click or release, was a God experience, the actual presence or activity of God in your consciousness.
6. Try not to stay in meditation for more than 10 minutes at a time. It takes a long time to be able to stay in meditation 10 minutes or longer.