ARE YOU SEARCHING FOR A MEDITATION TEACHER WHO:
- Can show you how to meditate in the most simplistic way?
- Understands what it takes to make meditating feel easy and natural?
- Is patient, supportive, encouraging, and inspiring?
A MEDITATION COURSE FOR REGULAR FOLKS
- Learn how to meditate in a way that feels deeply restful.
- Beginners with busy minds and hectic lives are welcome.
- Ancient but non-religious technique with straightforward instructions.
- Short practice times with NO uncomfortable seated positions.
- Gradual, step-by-step approach to learning and practicing.
- Get results: you will be self-sufficient after only four 90-minute sessions.
YOU’RE INVITED TO A FREE MEDITATION INTRO
To begin learning, you’re invited to attend a free Intro Session, which is an in-person orientation to the technique and course of instruction. The course usually begins the day after the Intro. There is no cost or obligation for attending this session.
HOW THE VEDIC MEDITATION TECHNIQUE WORKS
To practice Vedic Meditation, you sit comfortably in a chair with your back supported and your eyes closed. You allow your mind to settle down to increasingly quiter levels of consciousness by utilizing the sound of a mantra. There is no focusing, concentrating or contemplating involved – and you don’t have to control the mind in any way. The technique feels natural, simple and effortless because you never have to ‘try’ to meditate. Practice time is only twenty minutes. To an outside observer you will appear to be simply resting.
HOW THE COURSE WORKS
The Vedic Meditation technique is taught in a gradual, step-wise format over four days (sometimes weekend intensive courses are offered as well). In addition to attending the daily sessions (which are normally held before or after work hours), participants are also assigned practice meditations at home. This insures that every participant will gain enough understanding and experience with both the technique and the underlying principles to become self-sufficient by the end of the course. Below is the course outline:
Intro Session: (60 minutes) An Introduction to the Technique
Interview: (5 minutes) Meet with the teacher
Session 1: (90 mins) Learn the basic technique
Session 2: (90 mins) Learn the mechanics of transcending thoughts
Session 3: (90 mins) Learn about the mind & body in meditation
Session 4: (90 mins) Integration & follow-up support
*The weekend course also consists of 4 ninety minute sessions, beginning on Friday (or Saturday) and ending on Sunday, with one to two ninety-minute sessions scheduled each day.
After the initial training, course participants are able to repeat the training an unlimited number of times for life, as well as attend weekly and monthly follow-up sessions to get their technique checked.
WHERE THE COURSE IS HELD
The Meditation Center is located at the Life Force Arts Center in the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago. The center is set up for comfort and convenience – a perfectly charming environment for personalized instruction. Sessions are by appointment only. No drop-ins please. If you would like to attend a Basic Meditation Course for beginners, please sign up for a free Intro Session or contact us for more information.
WHO IS THE TEACHER
Light Watkins is one of a handful of expertly-trained independent Vedic Meditation teachers in the world. He is a masterful communicator and an expert at relating the ancient principles of meditation to regular folks using analogies and metaphors from everyday life. Light and his Vedic Meditation colleagues have personally taught tens of thousands of people from all walks of life to meditate over the last 40 years. Prior to becoming a full-time meditation teacher in 2007, Light worked for many years in advertising, both in front of and behind the camera. He grew up in Alabama and graduated with honors from Howard University in Washington, D.C. Light’s professional history involves work and achievements in publishing, design, the toy industry and the healing arts. Light is currently based in Venice, CA and regularly teaches meditation workshops throughout North America.
Disclaimer: Light Watkins teaches independently and is not affiliated with the Transcendental Meditation organization.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How is Vedic Meditation different from other techniques?
Most other meditation practices are monastic in nature, and require some degree of concentration, focus, or contemplation. Vedic meditation is the quintessential ‘householder’ meditation technique, and therefore it requires virtually no activity. Instead, practicing it feels natural, simple and effortless. You sit comfortably in a chair or on a sofa, with your feet up on an ottoman or down on the floor – it doesn’t matter – and you never feel that you have to try to push thoughts away or concentrate on images. You won’t be reliant upon CDs, DVDs, or headphones in order to experience the deepest states of your awareness. You also won’t be asked to “think about this and now visualize that” to manufacture a good mood. Instead, you learn how to use your mind and body in concert with one another to create the deepest experience of restful awareness achievable by humans. Your 20 minute practice will often fly by, and you’ll learn to meditate almost anywhere, irrespective of background noise or light quality. The teaching style is designed for busy people with jobs and families to be able to practice just enough each day to get the maximum benefits in the quickest amount of time.
Is this the same as Transcendental Meditation?
While there are many similarities between the Vedic Meditation and Transcendental Meditation techniques and courses of instruction, Light Watkins teaches independently and is not affiliated in any way with the Transcendental Meditation organization. Historically though, the teachings and principles of both styles come from the same Shankaracharya lineage of India, and both are considered to be automatic self-transcending meditation techniques.
Do I have to change my lifestyle in order to benefit from this technique?
No you don’t because the technique is sequential and scientific in nature. Like yoga, Vedic Meditation can be practiced and enjoyed by anyone, regardless of cultural or religious beliefs or lifestyle. It’s not something you have to believe in or have faith in for it to work.
What if I have too many thoughts when I try to quiet my mind?
If you feel like your mind is always active, or that your body is too fidgety to sit still, you are actually a perfect candidate for this technique because you don’t have to ‘try’ to stop thinking, try to sit still, or ‘try’ to do anything for that matter. ‘Trying’ is actually what excites the mind and leads to more thinking. Vedic Meditation effortlessly settles the mind in the most natural and immediate way.
What kind of benefits will I get from meditating?
Meditators report experiencing deep rest, the release of stress, more energy, clearer thinking, better health, and improved personal relationships.
Other notable benefits include:
· Improved memory, energy, creativity, intelligence
· Relief from depression and anxiety
· Relief from migraines, headaches and asthma
· Relief from insomnia and other sleeping disorders
· Faster reaction times
· Reduced cholesterol levels
· Relief from fatigue
· Stronger immune system
· Reduced risk of heart disease
· Normalization of blood pressure
· Improved sports performance
· Reduction of biological aging
· Reduced addictive behaviors
· Normalization of weight
How much will it cost me to learn meditation?
In accordance with ancient Vedic tradition, each student will be asked at the beginning of their course to make a one-time financial contribution that is graduated based on their income level. Each participant determines his or her contribution on the honor system. By using this sliding-scale contribution system, we are able to give everyone access to the same high quality meditation instruction.
In exchange, you receive personalized instruction from an expert instructor, plus any additional instruction you may require if you have special needs. Once you complete the course you are able to repeat it an unlimited number of times for the rest of your life at no additional cost. There are other measures in place to provide free, unlimited, lifelong support and guidance to all graduates, for life.
Can I have a private course?
Yes, but you must first come to an Intro Session, unless you are being referred by someone who has already been given private training.
An informational site about Vedic Meditation courses throughout the country
A worldwide directory of Vedic Meditation teachers and events
A comparison site of popular meditation techniques
The official Self-Realization Fellowship website
A site on the Buddhist meditation technique Vipassana, also known as Insight Meditation
The official Transcendental Meditation website
1609 W. Belmont Ave
Chicago, IL 60657
1 Superior Street
Chicago, IL 60654