I found a great new book on meditation techniques from the Kabbalistic tradition. Ecstatic Kabbalah, by Rabbi David A. Cooper, presents several techniques for calming the mind, improving concentration, connecting with the Divine, and changing one's world. The latter two are the ones I wish to share. (If you want to check out the wealth of information in this little book, click here to purchase it at Amazon).
As you may know, the Jewish religion considers the name for what some call God too divine to be uttered aloud or even completely spelled out. They believe that the divine concept is too large to be grasped by the human mind, and even trying to capture it in a word would necessarily limit it. They use the letters YHWH, the tetragrammaton (tetragram = a word of four letters), as the incomplete symbol for the Divine.
The meditation technique I wanted to share today is one which connects us to the divine. In this, we first inhale and at the same time whisper (on the intake of breath) "Yah," which is the first part of the tetragrammaton. "Yah," according to Cooper, refers to the transcendent quality of the divine; the unknowable, the mysterious, the ineffable. As we exhale, we whisper (on the outgoing breath) "Weh," which Coopers explains as the immanent, the apparent part of the divine. We inhale, or pull in, the transcendent, and exhale, or let out into our world, the immanent.
I have found that this meditation technique really helps me get centered and realize that I am an instrument of the divine. I pull in the Spirit of the Source, allow it to flow through me, and then release it to work in the world. Way cool.