This is a subject that is dear to me. I have used this tool for over five years and it has helped me tremendously in times of doubt.
When I was living in a small suburban town called Bois-Colombes near Paris we had a publicly run sports complex. It had great infrastructure and was cheap. 45€ a month got you full access to the gym, the sauna, the hammam, the pool, aqua gym and the jaccuzi.
My schedule was kind of weird at the time. I worked 8 to 12, had a 12 to 6pm break, and back to work from 6 to 9pm. So I would go in the beginning of the afternoon when no one was there. One day I decided to meditate in the jacuzzi, and I just closed my eyes and spontaneously decided that I would imagine walking down stairs. Don’t ask me why, I just figured I “had to go deep into meditation”, and this is what i came up with.
So I did. I walked down stairs, white stairs. There were exactly 19 steps down, and once I finished going down I stepped onto a large white tiled platform. Words started appearing, floating in mid air, and I couldn’t quite read them. So I caught one and climbed onto it, and kept on climbing until I reached a breach in the top of this space I was floating in. And once I did I could read them… “disrespectful”, “ coward » and others. And they either burst into flames or transformed into positives once I read them. At some point I slid back down through the hole I came from and then came back up the stairs to the jaccuzi I had been sitting for over 45 minutes.
Not having premeditated this I asked one of my clients who was a psychologist about the experience. She told me I had put myself into a “trance” and that I had lived was a rebirth, which was absolutely accurate considering the phase I was going through at the time.
Since then I have used this tool to guide me to my inner self. To the part of me that knows what I have to do next in my life and ask it for guidance. It is always through metaphor and imagery :
- I have had to climb a mountain and solved enigmas to pass obstacles, and get to the top of it.
- I have had to free animals from different situations, who gave me gifts as a reward and guided me to the deeper layers of myself. Going down the seven floors leading to my unconscious to free it on the back of a winged Lion.
- I have had to undress of my ego, my pride, and my worldly possession to become as thin as paper so I could slip in between two huge rocks and access the book I have always wanted to write an bring it back to the shores of my conscious.
- I have met my repressed fears and have had to free them so I could go on with my life.
- I have had dinner with the 12 different aspects of me. Some of them were really pleased with me while other were desperately pissed off, and one of them told me something I had forgotten about my past.
If you feel you are at a crossroad and have a very difficult decision to make. If you feel at unease for no apparent reason. I suggest you take 1 hours today, turning everything off to go inside to meet yourself.
This is how :
Before you go into this meditation, have a purpose:
You probably have a question like “Am I one the right path in my life?” “Why am i unhappy?” “What should I do next I am lost?”. And hold onto that question before you get into position.
Find an very comfortable spot to sit down, or lie on:
To take full advantage of this inner adventure, you want to be completely unaware of your body. Which is why I think the jaccuzi worked so well for me. Yoga was apparently invented for this purpose. So that sitting down would be completely comfortable for yogis, and they could fully concentrate on meditation. I now go for an hour in an isolation tank, which puts you in a suspension state, blocks out any noise, and in complete darkness so you are just with your mind. I do it once a month. I use it as a sort of a mind wash to reset my goals, and make sure I am making the right decisions in my life.
Let yourself go and try and relax as if you were just about to go to sleep :
You know how you sometimes have weird ideas just before you go to sleep? In that half awake state? That is what you are looking for. Let your mind be loose and open to imagery, silly thoughts that combine and swirl into adventures.
Choose a way to go down into your subconscious :
I use stairs, but maybe it can be an elevator, a slope, a slide, a pole, a rope, a ladder… anything to help you go down.
Then visualise it. It doesn’t have to be very clear, it can be kind of fuzzy. Sometimes it just won’t work. Once the steps were sloping down and were very thin. So i had to take my shoes off in my vision which meant I could finally make the trip.
Choose a number, whether its a number of steps, a time it takes to go down, or a given sign that you have a arrived, and make the trip. Count backwards. And then go down… 10… 9… 8… 7… 6…
Once you get there, try and interact with your environment :
Just stay curious about what is around you. If you see someone or a figure, even scary one ask it a question. Either the question you came here with, or who it is, or what he or she wants. And they’ll answer. Sometimes nothing seems to happen, so you have to make them happen. Like decide to walk in a given direction, ask a question to the empty space, or simply wait. Eventually, your mind will wake up and answer you.
Don’t analyse, just go with the flow :
Trying to analyse what is going on will probably do you a disservice. Just live the experience an go with what you feel is right.
Get out when you have your answers :
Climb back out by the way you came, or fly back, or swim back by the new means you have discovered, but come out slowly, as a conclusion. This is why I don’t like to have an alarm, and to have plenty of time.
Write everything down :
Once it’s over, take a pen out and try to write everything down in as much detail as possible. Quite like a dream it will slip away very easily. Capture what happened in the right order as much as you can. And then give yourself time to come back to reality.
Re-read it :
Come back to it about a week later. You’ll realise how important what you did was. You probably solved a problem, or went and unlocked an old thought pattern that was stopping you. You won’t have processed why happened immediately, but when you re-reda it with a clear head, it will slap you across the face and wake you up.
Do it A few times a year:
I would recommend once a month, but I easily doubt myself, so I need to reassure myself. i feel like I’m constantly evolving. try every 3 months, or at least twice a year to stay on path.
Making this a regular practise on top of daily meditation will help you push through phases in your life faster, because any mental hurdles you have should dissipate, and any old emotional wounds should also heal.
Take care of yourself, and take it easy.