August 2007: Page 1, 2, 3, 4

Shaban 1428

Volume 23 No 8

In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Submitters Perspective

Monthly Bulletin of the International Community of Submitters Published by Masjid Tucson

The A-B-C’s of Meditation

Don’t be fooled by the title. This is not a “how-to” on meditation. I don’t know about breathing techniques, and “mantras,” and things like that. I just know that the Quran tells us to meditate:

Is it not better to be one of those who meditate in the night, prostrating and staying up, being aware of the Hereafter, and seeking the mercy of their Lord? Say, "Are those who know equal to those who do not know?" Only those who possess intelligence will take heed. [39:9] 

The meditation at night is more effective, and more righteous. [73:6]

And I know that I personally have problems concentrating. In talking with others, I find I’m not alone in this. Well, I devised my own system to help me. My meditation may only last a couple of minutes, but when I use my A-B-Cs, I find that I’m better able to concentrate for those few minutes. So I’m just sharing my personal system—for you to use, modify or simply ignore!

I like to concentrate on the names/traits of God, or sometimes I count

my blessings. To focus my mind, I use the alphabet. This helps keep my mind from wandering. Usually I start with A, but since I tend to fall asleep sometime around M, I will sometimes start in the middle or end of the alphabet, just so I can give all the letters a chance!

Traits of God: A=“God is the Almighty,” B=“God is Bounteous,” C=“God  is Compassionate,” D=Designer, E=Eternal…. And I just keep going through the alphabet, until I finish or fall asleep. But if I fall asleep, I fall asleep thinking about God, and that’s always a good thing.

My blessings: A=Air we breathe, B=the Birds that sing, C=my Car, D=my wonderful Dogs…. Again, right through the alphabet, concentrating my thoughts on all the wonderful blessings God has bestowed on me.

Now, of course, you run into some problems with certain letters. I don’t know of a Q trait of God, and certainly no X or Z. So I either get very creative (God is eXtremely kind or God has all Qualities), or I just skip over those tough letters. The point is

simply to provide a focal point for my mind to help keep me on track.

Sometimes, just for variety, I’ll use 1-2-3 instead. I count ten things that I’m thankful for. This is especially wonderful when I’m traveling—I like to think of the blessings God gave me that day. So I will count off, actually count them on my fingers to keep me focused, the ten best things that happened that day: a beautiful sunset, hiking a difficult trail, the RV starting every time and taking me where I wanted to go, seeing a deer or a bear or a hawk. And after each thing that I mention, I always try to say, “Thank You, God.” It reminds me that nothing happens except in accordance with God’s will. And it keeps me appreciative of the Source of all my happiness.

If you count God's blessings, you cannot possibly encompass them... [16:18] 

We have endowed Luqmaan with wisdom: "You shall be appreciative of God." Whoever is appreciative is appreciative for his own good. As for those who turn unappreciative, God is in no need, Praiseworthy.[31:12]  

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