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Meditation and Stress Coping using Kabbalistic Techniques and Techniques for Releasing Anxiety

by Marcus Weston(more info)

listed in anxiety, originally published in issue 126 - August 2006

It is widely recognized that certain diseases, which are common in ageing, such as Alzheimer's disease and depression, can be associated with high levels of stress hormones. Stress can elevate blood pressure over an extended period, and trigger the release of high levels of clot-forming platelets able to induce heart attacks.

Exam results, parental expectations, marriage issues, work demands… none of us escape the escalating pace of modern day life, and its inevitable by-product called 'stress'.

Despite the increasingly worrying physiological effects, the causes of stress are less 'scientific'. Science is only just beginning to understand the role of consciousness in the creation of our physical lives, hence the popular interest in the previously secret wisdom of Kabbalah – a 4,000 year universal wisdom answering the most fundamental questions of life, such as "Why do these things happen to me and how can I assure myself of greater stress-free living?"

Kabbalah explains how we can improve our lives, and the lives of others, by working on our consciousness, in harmony with universal spiritual principles. According to Kabbalah, the essence of life is about constant growth. At each moment, we are either travelling closer to, or further away from our potential. Kabbalistic techniques and meditations enhance our capacity to transform stress, placing us back in control of our lives.

Get Personal – A Kabbalistic Approach to Stress

Think of a situation that you personally feel stressed about right now. It could be a situation within your relationships, your finances, health or any other area of your life.

Is this stress good or bad for you?

Stress that brings us to anxiety, phobias and tension is clearly in no way beneficial. However, is there such a thing as healthy stress?

Let's explore an everyday scenario between two business partners. The first partner is stressed out and just can't handle any more pressure. The second partner is simply thriving on the same level of stress. Therefore, it's not the situation itself that is causing the stress. It's the combination of the situation, and how we learn to handle it as individuals that defines the 'good or bad' factor of stress.

Is money good or bad? Is a soulmate good or bad? Are genetics good or bad?

The answer is the 'thing' is neither good nor bad; it completely depends on what we are going to do with the 'thing' that will animate it to become good or bad.

In the same way, we cannot assume that stress is necessarily a good or bad thing; it's what we do when we are confronted with our stress that matters. Either we choose (yes we actually choose!) to become the effect of life, the victim, the 'poor me' mentality or we choose to become the cause, the creators of change, of growth, of newness and of rejuvenation.

Back to Basics – Us and Creation

According to Kabbalah, there exists a universal force of creation, also known as Chi, God, The Universe, Light, Nature or Energy. This is an infinite, giving force; it is not designed for worship. It's designed for use – to unlock all of life's infinite potential and fulfilment within.

The word Kabbalah means 'to receive', and the tools of Kabbalah raise our level of consciousness, so that we can receive the unlimited fulfilment that life offers each one of us through every moment.

As individuals, we face different levels of pressure. Just as a gym instructor would tell you, only by increasing resistance can you grow, so too by tackling one level of stress with the correct Kabbalistic tools, the uncomfortable will eventually become comfortable!

According to Kabbalah, the universe wants one thing from us, for us to increase our level of consciousness so that we can handle more fulfilment in our lives. Life constantly presents situations for us to handle in order for us to 'earn' more of this fulfilment. When we say we "can't handle it," we are saying that we can't handle more fulfilment. Whatever arrives each day, good, bad or ugly, it's life's way of pushing us to expand our capacity to hold a greater level of fulfilment. Our goal is to conquer and embrace that newness so that it will become inner growth.

Why is it so Tough?

Seemingly, if we are at a hypothetical level ten in life, there should be nothing that prevents us from wanting to reach level 11. However, something within us often does obstruct us from reaching level 11 – our body consciousness!

Our body consciousness represents our fears, false expectations, our doubts, guilt and so on. It blocks us from enjoying the next level of fulfilment. Each one of us has our own barriers as to why we will not embrace growth. When we are not excited or stimulated about moving to the next level, it is an indication that our body consciousness has taken over.

Every time we define external stress as bad for us, we are putting a barrier between us and the extra level of fulfilment and internal growth that is trying to come in.

The Kabbalist 'Proactive Formula' for Coping with Stress

Too often, we react 'without thinking' to situations, or jump to conclusions without exploring the bigger picture. Kabbalistic techniques support us in switching from a reactive state where stress will control us, to a proactive one putting us back in control of the stress.

1. A Stressful Situation Occurs

According to Kabbalah, nothing happens by coincidence. Life is about cause and effect. Every thought, word and action really matters. Every stressful situation, (or non-stressful situation for that matter), offers us an opportunity for growth and breakthroughs.

2. Pause

Don't assume that the situation is necessarily bad for you. For example: Looking back, can you think of a time when you were 100% sure that you were completely in love, that your friends were completely trustworthy, that you were onto a sure thing in business, only for this situation to turn suddenly disastrous? Conversely, think of the most difficult time in your life, perhaps you look back on that now as one of the most valuable learning experiences. The fact is, we can feel great about seemingly bad things, and feel awful about good things in our lives – we need to remove the typical reactions of our mind and body, which tell us that all stress is bad for us. So pause, to shut down these reactions.

3. Observe Your Body Consciousness

Realize that the internal reactions of fear, expectation, doubt, animosity, blame, tension, anxiety, guilt and so on are the real enemy – not the external situation that's stressing you. The internal reactions can influence you to fall into the victim 'poor me' consciousness, and become the effect, and there is the real problem. Remember, the real opponent is never the person or situation outside – it's the reaction within.

4. Be the Cause

Having observed the power of our attachment to all the negative reactions, let go and apply the same amount of power and energy to becoming the cause of change. Create, initiate and inspire a positive action – and inject excitement! This creation of new consciousness will grow like an acorn in the ground – it starts to improve our moods, which in turn changes the way we act toward others, which improves the way we can receive from others – therefore, life improves.

However, the first thing a Kabbalist will teach you is to never believe what you've been taught! Go and experiment, taste how life treats you different, and then you will derive pure knowledge of your own cause and effect.

Welcoming Growth

At a certain age, you probably began to realize that you simply couldn't run away from life – you may have previously believed that you could change your job, house, partner or country and things would be OK again. However, if you don't change the 'you', the same cycle of stress will keep presenting itself.

So recognizing this, life lets us choose between two types of pressure: involuntary pressure and voluntary pressure.

By committing to 'be the cause' in your life, you commit yourself to receiving more fulfilment. The act of committing yourself to transforming pressure, stress and fear is invaluable. When you take it upon yourself to transform areas where you realize you have blockages, you are strengthening your ability to handle more of life's natural internal fulfilment.

Welcoming stress is not about being sick with pressure. The goal is to be composed with pressure and approach it one level at a time. Naturally, we all need to pause and recharge before we move to the next level of growth. The goal is for us to create an inner pressure to change though. Consistent inner growth allows us to control our lives and not to have life control us. When we complain, it's an indication that we are the effect, the victim, that life is all of a sudden unfair. The simple fact that we choose to embrace pressure as potential fulfilment, and decide with excitement that we will handle it, automatically increases our growth and fulfilment.

Now that we have delved a little further into stress, consider again your personal situation – is your stress any better now? Can you identify in which way it is trying to teach you to receive more from life?

Measuring Growth

Once you have put the practical Kabbalistic steps into action, a good test for growth is to look back every three months, and ask yourself if you have noticeably changed your consciousness. Do you feel less reactive? Do others comment on how much stronger and more proactive you are? That's the bottom line. If we are not changing, problems are likely to surface.

Kabbalistic Meditations

Kabbalistic meditations offer a means of connecting to the infinite current of universal energy that flows throughout our physical world. These ancient and powerful meditations are intended for all people, and transcend religion or language. They connect directly to the soul – the one thing which unites all 6.5 billion of us. The ancient Aramaic letters and sequences are activated visually, with each letter containing a unique vibration. According to Kabbalah, meditating on these sequences, from right to left, helps us to focus on removing our personal blockages and open up pathways to transformation.

For over 4,000 years Kabbalists have described how everything exists in 'three columns' – a right side which represents the plus pole or proton energy – a left side, representing the side of receiving or electron energy and a central, 'resisting' neutron force. This is the essence of balance, whether it's an atom, electricity or a stool to sit on!

The three letter sequences are like dial-codes of energy. When meditating:

• If you wish to receive all the power of the meditations, you must first think to share this with others. The degree to which you can begin from a 'sharing consciousness' is the extent to which you will receive the power of the meditation;
• Visualize a white ball of energy washing through your body from the letters as you consciously send this energy to others;
• Activate the power of the meditation in your life by following up with a proactive, sharing action.

Defusing Negative Energy

The Kabbalists teach us how to understand and change the field of energy that extends almost seven feet from our bodies. Whenever this field is charged with negative energy, we find ourselves in a lower state of being. Highly stressed people and places influence our lives when we are exposed to them. When our personal space is charged with negative energy, it inhibits our sense of wellbeing.
Meditation: Purifying light banishes negativity and deactivates harmful influences. Nervous tension dissolves. Balance and positive energy permeate my being. I feel positive and peaceful.

Letting Go

A degree of discomfort is to be expected when we evolve from one level to the next. Naturally, there will be elements we need to let go of, such as our need to be right, our habit to believe only what we see, or our routine of blaming. Letting go can be uncomfortable. As long as we are aware of the need for consistent growth, we can maintain considerable calmness in the process.
Meditation: I move forward, letting go of regrets and limiting thoughts. I release past emotions that drag me down and gain the courage to jump into a bright future.

Certainty

There is only one sure way to render all the techniques for transforming stress inoperative and worthless. It's called uncertainty.

'I'll believe it when I see it' can now be replaced with 'I'll see it, when I believe it'.

When we are certain that we can tackle a problem, we are more than halfway to solving it. Certainty is not just confidence that we'll get what we want. Certainty means recognizing that we are already getting everything we need for our personal growth.
Meditation: I awaken the power of certainty within me so that negative sensations disappear, like switching on the light in a dark room. I trust that I am receiving exactly what I need for my personal growth.

Further Information

For information on upcoming free introductory seminars call: Tel: 0800 901 2990; www.kabbalahcentre.co.uk

Techniques for Overcoming Fear and Anxiety:

Technique #1

The Fear Formula
The first technique is a simple but powerful formula for confronting and conquering your fears:
1. Identify the symptoms that are triggered by the stressful situation.
2. Move towards the stressful situation and prepare to confront it by controlling the "Fight or Flight Response", knowing it's your own fears and negative thoughts inciting your symptoms.
3. Gradually tolerate the feelings of discomfort by allowing the fear or anxiety to get stronger.
4. Confront the fear with certainty and trust, knowing that on the other side of the fear, freedom and happiness await you.

Technique #2

The Art of Sharing
The purpose of life, according to Kabbalah, is for us to create our own happiness and fulfillment. We do this a little bit of that each time we share.

One way to deal with a moment of fear and anxiety is to shift into sharing mode the moment the fear strikes. Look for someone to help. Take an action outside yourself. According to Kabbalah, when we find ourselves gripped by fear and anxiety, we are thinking only about ourselves.

Technique #3

The Willingness Factor:
According to an ancient military saying, If you would have peace, prepare for war. An enemy who sees that you are prepared to fight a war is unlikely to start one. The same logic applies to confronting our fears.

This is our third technique: if we are fully prepared to confront our fears-really, truly prepared and determined to do so-events often arrange themselves in such a way that the confrontation never takes place. Remember, our goal is to effect genuine change within ourselves; the fear itself is just a trigger to help incite the change.

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About Marcus Weston

Marcus Weston first heard about Kabbalah whilst travelling in the Middle East. Upon his returning home, he researched the topic and began to attend classes at the Kabbalah Centre. Marcus put the practical teachings of Kabbalah into action through his newly opened headhunting and consulting firm. As his business grew, so too did his desire to learn more about Kabbalah. In time, Marcus sold his business and committed himself to teaching Kabbalah full-time. From 2002, Marcus taught Kabbalah for three years in Los Angeles. He returned to the London Kabbalah Centre to spearhead several important social enterprise projects, supporting individuals, families, communities and global issues across Europe, Africa and Asia. He may be contacted via marcus.weston@kabbalah.com

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