In the first Poem of the Week post, I mentioned how powerful words can be in practicing manifestation (search for “Art Psalms” to read the full article), but they can also be used in lyric form to aid in the meditation process. Traditionally, meditative music is considered to be instrumental or to have a guide’s voice recorded over it in order to keep the listener focused. Secular music heard every day on the radio isn’t usually considered useful in entering a meditative state or vibrating at a higher spiritual level. Words that are normally used to aid in meditation are chants, repeated over and over again until you become part of the sound, but sometimes we are so familiar with the lyrics of a song that they are like a chant, exclaiming our emotions mixed with melody.
The next time you are having trouble meditating or if you are looking for a change in your spiritual routine, I recommend going through your cds and playlists for a song you know completely by heart (generally, unexpected sounds can jar someone from a meditative state) both lyrically and musically. It doesn’t matter if the song has a strong beat or a soft, slow tune, as long as you are familiar with it inside and out and can connect to the emotions portrayed, it will do. You can even use the soundtrack to your favorite movie! Try putting it on repeat or making a playlist full of songs that meet that description, though be aware of the transitions between songs. This is supposed to aid in meditation, not make it more difficult.
Start by laying down or sitting in a comfortable position, as always, and try closing your eyes and resisting to urge to sing along or move to the beat. Clear your mind and try just saying the words along with the song. Focus on the imagery that comes with every verse and allow yourself to be consumed by that imagery. Eventually stop saying the lyrics out loud and just let your mind drift and your thoughts flow.
It may take some time to get used to, but this is a great way to change up your meditations!
As a side note, I would like to thank Dan for our first comment on the Mermaid Tree! He is a photographer that created an app for the iPhone that pairs scenic meditative pictures with quotations. It is inexpensive and a great tool for meditation. To check out the link, look for the comment under the “10 Best Free iPhone Apps for the Spiritual.” This is another way to use your phone in your spiritual life as well as use words in your meditative practices.
What sorts of music, if any, do you listen to when meditating? Have you ever had a deep meditation to a song with lyrics?