Meditation Made Easy
Learn a very simple beginner meditation technique that was created thousands of years ago for regular people, not monks.
The training includes:
- Simple instructions for meditating anywhere
- Personalized training with a teacher
- Resources for keeping meditation easy
- Free and ongoing support for life
- Access to free group meditations for life
The benefits are:
- Better sleep
- More energy
- Clearer thinking
- More creativity
- Less worries
WHY IS IT NECESSARY TO HAVE A TEACHER?
Like ballet and martial arts, if you want to get really good at something, it’s helpful to study with an expert who can provide you with the structure, mechanics and feedback necessary to go further than you can ever get on your own. Meditation is no exception. Accessing profoundly deep states is easy, if you know what you’re doing. That’s why throughout its 5,000 year history, meditation has been almost exclusively taught by teachers and Gurus. Books and videos are fine supplementary tools, but if the goal is to practice meditation in the most efficient way, you’ll have far more success being trained by an expert teacher.
WHO IS THE TEACHER?
Light Watkins recognized his passion for teaching meditation after meeting his Guru in 2002. Following years of daily meditation, Vedic studies, and apprenticeship, Light traveled to India to be trained in the ancient ways of teaching meditation. Afterwards, he dedicated himself to transforming people from all walks of life into self-sufficient meditators. Light’s students have used meditation to whip PTSD, hypertension, sleep deprivation, anxiety, depression, and even cancer. To date, Light has personally taught over a thousand people to meditate, having yet to meet someone he couldn’t teach.
HOW TO GET STARTED?
Everyone who begins this training must first attend an Intro to Meditation session, which is both a meet-and-greet as well as an orientation to the ancient Vedic Meditation technique that Light Watkins teaches. During the session, Light will speak about what meditation entails and how it works. He will also detail the ancient teaching format in which he was trained by his Guru, and after experiencing the Intro Session, you may elect to join Light’s comprehensive training session, or not. There is no cost for this session and never any obligation to go further.
WHAT DOES THE COURSE ENTAIL?
Our comprehensive training courses usually begins on the day following the Intro Session. In a gradual, step-wise format, spread over four consecutive sessions, we’ll teach you all of the in’s and out’s of how to meditate (don’t worry, we have measures in place to accommodate your busy mind and busy schedule). With our time-tested teaching formula, we insure that you will gain enough understanding and experience to become self-sufficient as quickly as possible. After your initial training, you will be encouraged to repeat the course at our cost as well as maintain frequent contact with your teacher. Below is an outline of the course:
Intro Session – Orientation
Meet the teacher and get your questions answered
Session 1: Receive the basic technique
You’ll be doing your first meditations within minutes
Session 2: Learn about the mind
A look at how the mind operates in meditation
Session 3: Learn about the body
How the body responds to meditation
Session 4: Re-integration
How to become a daily meditator and get support
Note: Each session is approximately 90 minutes
The exact times for the courses vary and will be outlined at your Intro Session.
WHAT’S THE COST?
Since the old days, learning meditation required a meaningful exchange of some sort. In our tradition, you are asked to make a sliding-scale financial contribution based on your personal weekly finances. This one-time contribution is determined by you, on the honor system, and it will cover the entirety of your personalized instruction as well as provide you with unlimited access to the basic training course and group meditations going forward. Receiving our high quality of instruction and lifetime warranty ensures that you will never need to pay for another meditation training for the rest of your life. See more about cost in the FAQ section below.
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 requires virtually no activity, which makes practicing it feel 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. You also won’t be asked to “think about this and now visualize that” to manufacture an imaginary experience. 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 shortest 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, we teach independently and are not affiliated in any way with the Transcendental Meditation organization. Historically, the teachings and principles of both Vedic Meditation and TM have roots in the same Shankaracharya lineage of India, and both are considered to be automatic self-transcending meditation techniques.
What are the times of the sessions?
Session times vary from location to location and course to course. For weekday courses, repeating sessions are usually offered at 7am and 7pm on each of the four days, and you can choose which of the two times works best for your schedule on each day. For weekend intensive courses, the four sessions are held on Saturday and Sunday, one in the morning and one in the evening on each of those days. For more specific times, contact us with the dates you had in mind, or wait and get them at the Intro Session.
What exactly do I get in exchange for my contribution?
• Personal instruction with your instructor
• Any resource material you need to stay refreshed in the technique
• Free access to repeat the meditation course once completed
• Free technical support with all Vedic Meditation teachers going forward
• Free access to group meditations for life
• Free access to meditation community events for life
What is my contribution used for?
All contributions go towards paying the teacher living wages and course expenses. Vedic Meditation teachers teach independently of any organization. There are no institutions or benefactors who subsidize the teaching. All of the arrangements for the courses are paid for out of the teacher’s pocket. Therefore, your contribution is used to pay for space rentals, airfare (if required), lodging, food, assistants, and other normal living and working expenses incurred by the teacher while teaching you and others, now and in the years to come.
What’s the average contribution amount?
Because we teach people from all walks of life and operate on a sliding-scale, there is no average contribution amount. Participants generally contribute anywhere from a few hundred bucks up to a few thousand dollars, depending on their individual means and level of inspiration for what we do. Since it’s a pay-it-forward system, most people tend to err on the side of being more generous – especially as they understand that their one-time contribution advance-funds all of their future participation in free group meditations and community activities for the rest of their life – something unheard of not just in meditation circles, but in any teaching community.
What if my contribution amount exceeds my budget?
Don’t worry about that. If you sincerely want to learn to meditate, we will do our best to find a way to satisfy the requirement of a meaningful exchange, whether it’s through volunteer work or allowing you to pay your contribution over time. Just come to an Intro Session, hear what’s involved, and voice any concerns you have with the teacher. Where there’s a will, we’ll make a way.
Is there an advanced course that I’ll need to take after my basic course?
No, there’s only one course you’ll ever need, and that’s the basic course. You’ll learn everything in the basic course that you will need to become a self-sufficient meditator, and to make sure your understanding of the technique stays as fresh as possible, you are invited to repeat the course as many times as you would like, with no expiration date.
If the course teaches me to be self-sufficient, why would I ever need to repeat it?
While you will indeed graduation from the course having gained a good enough understanding of the meditation technique and mechanics, you will be lacking in extensive experience. Having 80 meditations under your belt will lead to a different level of understanding and perhaps more refined questions versus having practiced only 8 meditations by the end of your course. The good news is once you complete the course, you’ll have expert meditators who you can always bounce your meditation-related questions off of, and you won’t have to pay anything extra for their advice.
How often do you offer the Basic Course?
We offer the basic course about once a month in some places and a few times a year in others. Please check our calendar page to see the current course schedule.
What if something happens to the teacher? How will I continue repeating the course for life?
All teachers of Vedic Meditation allow meditators taught by other Vedic Meditation teachers to re-attend their courses for free. As long as you’ve gone through the course with any one of the teachers, you will have access to all of the teachers for life.
I live in a city where there are no Vedic Meditation teachers, so will I not be able to get support?
You may continue to stay in contact with the teacher after the course via phone, email, Skype or social media. Many teachers travel to facilitate courses in other cities as well. We have a directory listing of teachers and the cities where they teach at VedicNetwork.com.
If I can’t complete the entire course due to my schedule, should I wait until the next course?
It depends. You must be able to attend as many sessions in person as possible, but at the very least, you need to attend the first session of the course. All of the other sessions can be made up later, or in other ways. Please mention this to the teacher at your Intro Session for options.
Is Vedic Meditation hard to do?
It’s quite the opposite. You won’t find an easier meditation technique anywhere around. Part of what makes it so easy and simple is being taught the in’s and out’s of the practice, and how it affects you on the level of the mind and body. When we understand something fully, it’s easier to relax and let go of unnecessary control. When we don’t understand what we’re doing, we’re racked with doubt about the simplest mechanics, which makes us feel the need to apply too much control – and this contributes to many of the reasons why meditation gets a bad rap.
Are there people who couldn’t learn the technique, even after taking the course?
The only requirement for sufficient learning is having the willingness to follow a few simple instructions. If someone isn’t willing to do that, then they won’t learn properly. Like boxing, ballet or martial arts, following the instructions of your coach or teacher is crucial if you want to excel beyond levels that you can achieve on your own. Anyone who follows the simple instructions can master the technique in a short time.
What percentage of people who learn the technique continue practicing it?
There’s no way to know for sure, but if we had to guess based on follow-up communications, we’d say about 60% of the people who learned the meditation technique practice it regularly, which for us means daily. Those who drop off are always invited to retake the course as a refresher at our cost, and many take advantage of that offer. Even if they stop meditating for ten years, they can always come back and retake the course or attend a group meditation for free.
How quickly are the benefits felt?
It depends. The most common and fastest benefit that people experience is getting better sleep. About 80% of the people who learn have a better quality of sleep almost immediately after beginning the meditation. This includes insomniacs and people who take sleep medications. Meditators also become more adaptable to big and small changes relatively quickly. Overall, the positive effects of daily meditating will be gradual, but steady.
Are there any negative side-effects to meditating?
Not that we’re aware of. When looking at the primary effect that meditation has on the body, it can be compared to sleeping. Both experiences are deeply restful for the nervous system and rest is known to have a dissolving effect on stress. Sometimes, stress release can cause a meditator to experience dream-like thoughts or have strange emotions in meditation. But overall it’s harmless and ultimately leads to better health as well as clearer and more creative thinking.
I read online that meditating can be dangerous. Can you address that?
There are a handful of people online who have set up anti-meditation websites that cite studies showing supposedly detrimental side-effects from practicing meditation. Saying meditation is bad for you is like saying sleep is bad for you, which is utterly ridiculous. People have the freedom to say whatever they wish online. Yet, most of these sites offer no hard evidence for their claims, especially compared to the thousands of studies by reputable sources that show the positive effects of meditation in every area of life. Furthermore, these anti-meditation people offer no alternative solutions to sleeping better, releasing stress, or de-exciting the mind and body. At the end of the day, the only way you’ll be able to see if meditation works is to try it for yourself. If you feel that it is detrimental to your health, you’re always free to stop meditating and try something else.
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
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