Secrets of Meditation
A Practical Guide to Inner Peace and Personal Transformation
For thousands of years people have tried to tap into the stillness and silence that rests within to discover their deeper selves. In Secrets of Meditation, davidji takes you there, demystifying the practice along the way and guiding the reader on an epic journey into your own consciousness. Whether you are new to meditation, a crisis meditator, or someone who has been meditating for years, Secrets of Meditation will take your practice, and your life, to the next level.
In this insightful book, davidji shares his own meditation journey along his own path to awakening and shares the impact it can have on your physical health, your relationships, your emotional well-being, and your spiritual life. As the secrets to an effortless meditation practice are revealed, you will unlock the door to your own personal journey and discover what is actually supposed to happen when you close your eyes.
davidji shares the wisdom of the ages in a very accessible and entertaining style—demystifying rigid commandments, revealing the five greatest myths of meditation, and illuminating the most powerful rituals to weave a practice into your day. Secrets of Meditation will have you meditating in minutes, setting powerful intentions for each day, and living a happier, easier, and more fulfilling life.
Secrets of Meditation by davidji Q&A
As the Lead Educator of the Chopra Center for Wellbeing in Carlsbad, California, davidji apprenticed for nearly a decade under Drs. Deepak Chopra and David Simon where he was appointed the first Dean of Chopra Center University. He is a Chopra Center Certified Vedic Master, Primordial Sound Meditation Instructor, Perfect Health Ayurvedic Lifestyle Teacher, a Seven Spiritual Laws of Yoga Instructor, a world-renowned creator of guided meditations, and the host of LIVE from the Sweetspot with davidji on Hay House Radio.
davidji is an internationally recognized life guide, author, meditation recording artist, motivational speaker, and meditation instructor. He travels the world sharing timeless wisdom on cultivating a spiritual practice, modern day stress management, emotional healing techniques, work life balance, and helping people find deeper personal fulfillment. His dharma, or life’s purpose, is to help individuals awaken to the best version of themselves and discover their finest expression in life.
Q. Why did you write Secrets of Meditation?
A. Meditating every day has taught me that we are all the masters of each moment. And effortlessly weaving this practice into every fiber of my being has given me tools and techniques for living life with less stress and anxiety, greater clarity and focus, expanded compassion and empathy, deeper love and more frequent joy, and a viewpoint that is more receptive to other perspectives, which offers me increased possibilities in each moment. I believe that anyone who is willing to embrace meditation can access these tools as well. Feel free to consider this book your meditation tool kit.
Q. What is the story behind Secrets of Meditation?
A. Secrets of Meditation is an exploration through the myriad schools and forms of the ancient wisdom tradition and practice known as meditation finally opening this once-secret and mystical world to the people who could most benefit – the mainstream, real-world audience. The journey through myriad meditations styles from biofeedback to breath awareness to gazing at candles to opening your energy centers to the mindfulness of Vipassana to mantra meditation and so many other forms is my 30-year journey through these various practices. As I share my personal exploration through each of these disciplines – in which I deeply immersed, experienced the benefits, let the ritual slip away, and then moved on to deeper and more consistent practices – so too will the reader be moved to the practice that most resonates and yields best results. Each chapter walks the reader through the nuances of each style providing examples, real-life insights, and actual exercises and meditations that will translate into a blooming and blossoming of the reader’s life.
Q. Are there really secrets of meditation?
A. The secrets of meditation are that 1) meditation is totally accessible to anyone in any moment and 2) there’s no “right” way to do it. As long as you can breathe, you can meditate.
Q. Aside from being a way to experience higher states of consciousness, what does the practice of meditation have to offer?
A. Meditation provides balance, healing, strength, vitality, energy, and deeper fulfillment at the physical level; calm, ease, clarity, less drama, and greater happiness and fulfillment at the emotional level; and deeper understanding of our individual purpose, as well as our universal connectivity within the realm of spirit. And now after thousands of years, our most modern scientific discoveries are validating these claims.
Q. Why is this book needed now?
A. Most of the conversation around meditation for the past 50 years has been from a new age, woo woo, altered state, or Soul perspective which has frightened away or disenfranchised the majority of those who might have been interested or benefited from the practice. The rest are historically “crisis” meditators who have been led to believe that every time we close our eyes to meditate, there is supposed to be an aha! moment or an instant spiritual solution that magically appears. After they don’t find the Holy Grail after one or two crisis meditations, they quit and move on to other coping mechanisms, which are either knee-jerk reactions, ways to medicate, or non-nourishing behaviors. Secrets of Meditation debunks those age-old misconceptions, demystifies the ancient myths, and makes this five-thousand-year-old practice a practical tool for people from every walk of life, every economic class, every political leaning, every culture, every life style, and EVERY BELIEF SYSTEM – essentially any one seeking a bit less stress, better coping skills, lower blood pressure, restful sleep, greater peace of mind, and more happiness in their life.
Q. How does this book differentiate from other meditation books?
A. Most of the books by meditation experts have been written either by long-time meditators with little real world experience or by rigid meditators with a specific meditation dogmas and agendas. Secrets of Meditation is written by davidji with 25 years of New York City hard charging real world corporate experience who found meditation later in life. He then began teaching meditation as the apprentice to Deepak Chopra. After several years, he was designated as the lead educator of the Chopra Center; and ultimately he taught so many people to meditate, that he was appointed the very first dean of Chopra Center University so that he could help transform students of meditation into teachers.
davidji has practiced and continues to explore many different types of meditation and Secrets of Meditation offers the reader many different types of meditation techniques to sample and explore so that everyone can find a technique that feels right for them. Secrets of Meditation explores guided meditation – the style that davidji has shared with hundreds of thousands of people in his CDs and online downloads; as well as biofeedback, visual meditations, sound wave meditations, energy meditations, sensory meditations, tantric meditations, Buddhist meditations, tasting meditations, universal meditations, and ultimately mantra meditation which he has personally taught in-person to more than 50,000 students. And he does this all through an engaging real-life, story-telling style which blends his vulnerability, his humour, and his expertise on the topics of meditation, heart healing, ancient wisdom traditions, yoga, and living in the real world.
Q. Is there a meditation tip you can share right now?
A. Sure. Stop right now and take a long, slow, deep breath in. When your lungs are totally full, gently let it go as slowly. That took bout ten seconds. In those ten seconds you were neither in the past nor in the future. You were pure present moment awareness for ten whole seconds. No worries, no stresses, no issues, no regrets. How do you feel? If we could take that ten seconds and expand it to ten minutes or even 25 minutes, imagine how your life would flow – considering the sense of calm you have from just those ten seconds of being present. Secrets of Meditation offers an easy path to weave that into your life at any time of any day.
Q. What’s the biggest secret?
A. The biggest secret is that RIGHT NOW…in this moment -through current scientific advances in modern imaging and bio-monitoring technology, brain scan software developments, and cutting edge neurological studies – science is offering us the opportunity to finally see the physical and emotional benefits of meditations from the changes in the physical structure of our brain, to the rising test-scores of students, the enhanced physical performance of athletes, the pain reduction in veterans and cancer patients, to the expanded ease with which families and co-workers can communicate more consciously.
Q. Can you share the most important secret of meditation?
A. It’s not a cult or religion. It does for the mind what stretching does for our physical muscles. It moves us from our heavily wired fight/flight responses, beyond our conditioned knee-jerk reactions to life’s challenges to greater clarity and more conscious states of restful awareness and interaction.
Q. Secrets of Meditation is also a story of you experiencing your aha! moment. Can you elaborate?
A. Yes. I started meditating 31 years ago and promptly fell off of my daily meditation practice. Over the next 30 years, I continued to fall back on and off. I then immersed in the world of corporate America and my practice gave way to the go-go, non-stop, hamster wheel of life and of my career. As I worked harder and harder, I fell out of balance as stress overcame me– at work, at home, in my relationships, and in my own physical body, I also lost my sense of purpose.
The painful impact on the core of my being from the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center and a homeless man who asked me the next week, “What’s going to be on your tombstone?” gave me the impetus I needed to leave my job, unplug from the world as I knew it, and head off in search of answers – I sort of did my own version of Eat, Pray, Love. I left my job, left my family and friends, and flew to Oxford, England to experience a Deepak Chopra meditation retreat – then headed off to India for a while in search of the guru… and it was there that I realized after searching high and low outside of myself …that the guru rests inside – in fact every answer to every question you could ever ask rests within. You just need to quiet yourself down – quiet the fluctuations of the mind- so you can hear the whispers of your heart and the guidance of your own innate wisdom.
My aha! moment was a spontaneous healing – a return to the memory of my wholeness.
I came back to the US as if re-birthed…crystal clear… with a consistent meditation practice, so I headed out to the Chopra Center to become certified as a meditation teacher and a attend a mindbody workshop. That was July 14th, 2003 – in France they call it Bastille Day – for me it was indeed my own liberation day. When the workshop ended, I stayed at the Chopra Center. I volunteered for six months to serve those like me who were searching for that light in the darkness. Over that half a year, I performed every job that was offered to me – from tea-maker to webmaster from marketing director to Chief Operating Officer. And then I was asked to teach people who were in my same shoes – ultimately evolving into the lead educator and then the teacher of teachers-to-be and then I was asked to be the very first dean of Chopra Center University. Ten years later, practicing meditation and sharing the practical application of meditation with others has become a core of my being. I have had the privilege of teaching hundreds of thousands of people around the world how to find balance, open to healing, and live purpose-driven lives of deeper fulfillment, with greater peace of mind.
I didn’t have the tools at the time. I ran from pain and I caused a lot of pain. People don’t need to blow up their lives to experience greater happiness. I’ve done that for them. Now I believe anyone can have the kookiest life and still be the calm amidst the chaos through a daily meditation practice.
Q. How have you seen the benefits of meditation unfold in your life?
A. I sleep better. I need less rest. I’m more creative. I don’t hold on to things that no longer serve me; and if I do I am able to see more easily where I am constricted and then slowly loosen my grip. I’m a lot more aware of my emotional blockages and limiting beliefs. I lost 50 pounds. I have greater clarity of who I REALLY am and what I want in life. I am more productive… more intuitive. Fewer things catch me by surprise. I breathe easier. I’m less reactive to disappointments and frustrations. I’m more compassionate and more forgiving. You cant expect to receive what you’re unwilling to give. I’ve shifted to truly appreciate every moment regardless of what life is delivering to me on a daily basis.
Q. What are some of the more practical applications in our day to day?
A. Modern science is showing us how stress suppresses our immune system, increases our blood pressure, thickens our blood and impacts our sex and growth hormones, and the ability to concentrate. Over the past ten years, I have sat one-on-one with tens of thousands of new meditators and have witnessed their bio-markers improve in just a few days -their blood pressure relaxes, their breathing becomes easier, their sleep patterns normalize, their sense of self become stronger, stress and anxiety seem to drip off of them as relief replaces their fear, and their symptoms of various diagnoses, such as MS, Crohn’s, Lupus, chronic pain, and cancer –as well as psychological challenges such as coping with loss, grieving over change, emotional turbulence, PTSD, withdrawal, self-imposed isolation, lethargy and depression– improve. I have also witnessed stress literally drip off new meditators as they move from feeling trapped in life to embracing new opportunities, possibilities, and celebrations.
Q. What about people who haven’t been formally diagnosed with something and who are just dealing with the day to day?
A. Life is difficult and meditation makes it easier – especially when you are going through a life change, job struggle, heart break, home challenge, or financial crisis. Life’s transitions become a little less prickly and the sting doesn’t snowball into drama, pain, emotional charge or a chronic condition like depression or insomnia.
These days people are worried about their rent, car payment, school payments, mortgages, and just getting by. What do you do with kids once they’ve graduated – and parents once they’ve turned the corner? Not only are we stressed about our own life challenges, and those of our significant other – but we’re now taking on the stress of our adult children, and our aging parents. Our Trust in the government, the housing market, the stock market, the health care system, the financial system, the company we work for, the social security system, the various safety nets of society, and the basic expectations of life have diminished. We need tools to help us shift our trajectory and thrive in life. Meditation can be one of those tools.
Q. What does the name davidji mean?
A. When I first came to the Chopra Center in 2003, I sat 20 feet from co-founder Dr. David Simon. One day after a few months of us working side-by-side, he said, “We need to give you a new name. There can’t be two David’s here. It’s too confusing.” He continued, “We’ll call you davidji. ji is a term of reverence in Hindi. It means beloved.” I replied, “And in the bible David means ‘beloved’. That would make me beloved beloved.” He smiled and said, “Perfect. Let’s see how you wear it.” and since that moment I’ve been referred to as davidji. Why lower case? – it was an act of humility. I am not THE beloved one – just one of 8 billion.
Q. How do we follow you?
A. Visit davidji.com and join my sweetspot community on line. You can also like me on facebook.com/flowoflove; and follow me on twitter.com/intothegap
About the Author
davidji is an internationally recognized meditation teacher, life guide, author, and public speaker. He travels the world sharing timeless wisdom on stress management, deeper life fulfillment, emotional healing, creating a spiritual practice, developing a daily routine, balancing business and wellness, getting unstuck, and taking your life to the next level.
In 2011, he led more than 100,000 people in more than 100 countries in 21 consecutive days of meditation. In 2012, he led more than 500,000 people around the world in the Winter Feast—40 consecutive days of online meditation.
Since 2003, davidji has lived and worked at the Chopra Center for Wellbeing in Carlsbad, California, which he has coined “the sweetspot of the universe.” Having apprenticed under Deepak Chopra and David Simon for more than a decade, he is a certified Vedic Master, the Chopra Center’s lead meditation and Ayurveda teacher, a core member of the Hay House stable of authors and radio personalities, the host of Chopra Center Radio, the guiding voice of the Chopra Center’s 21-day Meditation Challenge™, and the Dean of Chopra Center University.
To join the SweetSpot Meditation Community, visit davidji.com.
Available: Sept. 4, 2012
Price: USA $15.95 • CAN $15.95 • UK £9.99
Format: 6″ x 9″ Tradepaper