A central question for me these days is: how do animals doze?

Throughout evolution, the panorama mode has been fundamental to their survival. And for animals, this is a constant reminder of how it feels to stop thinking, be still inside, receptive to and connected with everything.

So, in the few moments animals have, when they can just doze and don't need to fight for survival, they are far more practiced than we are, and much more able to turn off and just feel life with all of their physical senses.

It's an habitual rut which animals have. And this is what sustains them. It gives them an underlying background sense of peace with themselves and the world.

If you are a complete beginner with meditation and want to learn some more conventional methods to contain the routine chattering of the mind, you might want to review the page on Meditation Methods.


Humans have forgotten how to doze. When humans doze, we slumber and daydream and get lost in abstract thinking – we have lost the feel for just being.

Panoraming is something which you can do for just a few seconds and it will be effective.

But every animal needs a minute or so before they can settle down to doze. To find any depth, humans need to doze for at least five minutes. 20 minutes would be better, but five is enough.


Check through your outer body, where it's touching the floor and the chair, your clothes, and the air on your face and hair. Are you comfortable?

Start with a minute of panoramic seeing and listening. Like any wise animal: check the surroundings before settling down for a doze. Then close the eyes.

The 'Breath-Body'

You may want to start with whole body breathing. Let's call it the 'breath-body' to distinguish how the breath feels from the inside, to how the body feels (and looks) from the outside.

Feel the breath-body. Feel yourself filling up and emptying out. "Getting bigger and smaller"; "filling up and emptying out"; "expanding and contracting"; all these are wholesome ways to feel the body while breathing.

If you can do this for a few minutes, then that would be amazing. Most people, myself included, will start to daydream.

To give the thoughts some sort of stability, develop a sequence as described in Meditation Methods.

The Inner Senses

And now, if you skipped them, you need to go back and read the other pages...

I usually start with light inside and all around or inner sound, simply because i find them more accessible. But sometimes i develop smelling, and tastes.

I experiment and explore. I often combine any two of the senses, but have never yet combined all four.

Except with smelling there's very little awareness of breath once i've started.

I'd love to ask animals or young children and get the real deal on how it's done, but it's usually fascinating experimenting...

So, i suggest starting with just one sense, and as with so much in life, it depends on timing and feeling, so follow your intuition.

Back to Chapter Seven : Creative Dozing
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