When we try to understand Meditation, need to understand the effective meaning of the words observation, attention and watch.There is poles apart difference in these three words of “Watching, Observation and Attention” on one side, and “thinking, analyzation and judgment” on the other. For both, consciousness is to be applied.
When you are able watch, observe and be attentive your consciousness is applied but is not allowed to get involved into any imaginations. Whereas, when consciousness is applied with concentration and then allowed to think, analyze, judge, the same consciousness gets involved into imaginations and can easily get scattered, losing the 100% need of attention and ability to observe. When you are able to simply observe etc., consciously you become aware of the Existence. Whereas, along with this attention, if thinking and judgment happens, consciousness is aware of only such a thing as imagined, judged by the consciousness and never gains the awareness of Real Existence. When consciousness is preoccupied with its imaginations it does not gain awareness of Itself.
So, the idea of meditation is to gain such ability just to watch, pay attention and observe. When you achieve the ability to observe without thinking at least for an hour or more, then your consciousness has gained meditative concentration on itself. When you pursue with all your patience and achieve just the ability to observe, watch and be attentive without any other thinking, imaginations, then you would have gained the ability to do Tapas. That means the consciousness, which is until now known as mind because of its habits to hold onto the imagined assumptions due to its own thinking and judgments, has now regained the pure, original form of remaining as consciousness, keeping intact the ability to become aware of anything onto which it is applied. Here you are trying to apply the consciousness on itself to know and become aware of your Real Self. You shall become aware of the fact that it is actually this consciousness which has given you the awareness of your own existence. This is the beginning of Tapas.
Then starts the extensive tests for determination, understanding of the real need for supreme peace, ability to mentally endure, ability to remain mentally silent at all times under any circumstances. All these are involved in Tapas. All mental pains are due to its own habits. Just like if you have a habit for smoking and then you are trying to give up. Pain of urge happens. It is the mind called consciousness which needs to remain firmly resolved that it wants to get rid of the unreal, impermanent things and achieve supreme eternal things. Then facing the tests becomes easy. If not easy, at least not too difficult or impossible. Without adopting these technical methods meditation becomes meaningless and years can pass by without achieving any fruitful results like peace, contentment, awareness of Self and remaining consciously in that Self, effortlessly forever. Once again to remind you all, dedication, discipline and patience are the mantras to practice and hold on. Mantras here means firm resolutions to remain dedicated till the last breath of life, disciplined under all circumstances, patience at all times to remain unperturbed and thereby not allowing the mind to get scattered. This enables one to gain enormous mental firmness and inner strength to face the challenge that one would have created for oneself. Vairagya is firm, polite understanding, awareness in the consciousness of the reality of mortality of physical body and this world.
May you all be fortunate to feel inspired and put in efforts. May you all be fortunate to achieve. May you all be blessed by the Divine Guru.
With love and blessings,
(Devotees around the world are celebrating this auspicious occasion from the 17th till the 21st of November, which is Kartk purnima according to the Indian calender, the day Shri Babaji came out to the world after His five years of Tapas in the Dehradun Ashram.)