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How to Practice Self-Inquiry Meditation

Self Inquiry Meditation

There is a deeper consciousness inside everyone, hidden beneath layers of thoughts, feelings, and desires.

This consciousness is like a big bulb of light. It is hidden by covers upon covers of thoughts, feelings, desires, worries, and fears. The purpose of self-inquiry meditation is to remove the covers and let this bulb of light – consciousness, shine unhindered.

After removing the covers, your consciousness and awareness of yourself will expand, and you will begin to experience more and more moments of happiness, bliss, and inner peace in your life.

Removing the covers that hide your inner consciousness is like taking off colored glasses that distort your vision and see things as they are.

When you remove the covers that hide your vision, you start to see life and reality as they are, without filters, leading you to a greater understanding of yourself, life, and the world.

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Self-Inquiry Meditation and Removing the Covers that Hide Your Inner Essence

These are worries, fears, negative thoughts, futile thoughts, limiting thoughts, and your attachment to meaningless matters and negative habits and situations.

How do you remove them so you can see and think clearly and become aware of the powerful, happy, and unlimited consciousness within you?

How do you remove the covers hiding your deeper consciousness – your essence? You do this by removing the layers of thoughts, beliefs, feelings, and desires hiding your true self.

It’s like removing from your eyes a pair of colored glasses with distorting lenses.

The process of removing the covers is called self-inquiry. It has been made available to the public through the teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi, who lived in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Below, I’ve included a simplified version of how to follow the process of self-inquiry meditation.

Guidance for Practicing Self-Inquiry Meditation

Here are simple steps to help you peel and remove the obstacles that hide the light of your inner consciousness. This is a simple and uncomplicated process, but you must repeat it at least once a day to get results.

Unlike other processes, self-inquiry takes you in a straight line toward your goal.

While practicing this meditation, do not analyze each thought, worry and fear. You will learn to detach yourself from them and not allow them to occupy your awareness.

1. Find a place to be alone and undisturbed for at least ten minutes.

2. Sit down comfortably and relax your body. Pay attention to each tensed muscle and relax it. Do so for a few moments.

3. Watch your thoughts calmly as they come and go. All you need to do is to be aware of your thoughts but refrain from identifying with them, getting involved with them, following them, or becoming immersed in them.

4. As each thought enters your mind and tries to claim your attention, ask yourself to whom this thought belongs and who is thinking it. You need to do so with every thought that enters your mind.

After some time, you will realize that most of the thoughts come from the outside, and you do not need to think them.

5. Do not analyze the thoughts or think about them. Just ask the questions mentioned above without even using words. The answer to these questions needs to come through your intuition and insight, not through mental discussion.

6. This process would be easier if you treat each thought with detachment and lack of interest as if watching a boring movie. You should also be careful not to follow the thoughts that enter your mind.

7. You will discover that you repeatedly forget these instructions and go after your thoughts, and you should repeatedly bring back your attention to this meditation. Your strongest ally here is your perseverance.

Self Inquiry Requires Non-Attachment to Your Thoughts

If you continue this meditation for some time, you will discover that you can detach yourself from your worries and restless thinking. This will allow you to be aware of the deep and wide consciousness within you, which was hidden until now.

The important point to remember while practicing the self-inquiry meditation is to detach yourself from your thoughts. Maintaining this attitude would give you power over your thoughts and desires and enable you to silence your mind.

The ability to silence your thoughts would lead to inner peace, inner awakening, and becoming conscious of your “True Self” – “Inner Awareness”.

This self-inquiry meditation gradually removes whatever covers your Inner Self and lets it shine unhindered. It is like removing all the stuff covering a strong light bulb and allowing its light to shine brightly.

“The degree of freedom from unwanted thoughts and the degree of concentration on a single thought are the measures to gauge spiritual progress.”
– Ramana Maharshi

In time, if you repeat the self-inquiry meditation daily, you will discover that your mind is becoming quieter, sharper, and less restless, producing fewer useless and meaningless thoughts and worries.

You will also discover that the compulsion to think and follow every thought is beginning to wane. You will also find out that you are starting to experience the sweet taste of inner peace in your everyday life, at work, at home, in comfortable situations, and in difficult situations.

“The consciousness in you and the consciousness in me, apparently two, really one, seek unity, and that is love.”
– Nisargadatta Maharaj

“By the practice of meditation, you will find that you are carrying within your heart a portable paradise.”
– Paramahansa Yogananda

Information About Focus and Inner Peace

If you liked reading this article, and wish to gain inner peace and control of your mind and thoughts, and allow the light of your inner consciousness shine through, I highly recommend reading and practicing the advice and exercises in the following books:

Focus Your Attention

Inner Peace in the Busy Daily Life

Calm Down the Nonstop Chatter of Your Mind

Emotional Detachment for Happier Life