“To commune daily with God in deep meditation, and to carry His love and guidance with you in all your dutiful activities, is the way that leads to permanent peace and happiness.”
– Paramahansa Yogananda
Guidelines for Meditation
- Wear clothing made of soft fabrics that do not make noise (for example, avoid nylon and certain other synthetics).
- Do not come if you have a cough, cold or a condition that creates restlessness. On such days, please meditate at home.
- Arrive early so that you can find a seat, and also practice the Energization Exercises.
- Turn off cell phones before entering.
- Refrain from bringing food and beverages (including water) into the chapel.
- If arriving late during the Energization Exercises, start with the first exercise of the series (double-breathing with tension), then join in with the next exercise that the group is practicing.
- If you know that you will have to leave early, take a seat in the back of the chapel to minimize distraction to others.
- Remain quietly seated during silent periods.
- Keep cell phones off. Absolutely no texting, please!
- During chanting periods only, you may use the restrooms, stand or do gentle stretches.
- Practice the meditation techniques quietly, so as to be inaudible to others.
- If arriving late or leaving early, please try to do so during the chanting periods. Before entering, pause to calm the mind and body. Exit at the beginning of a chant. Whenever possible, try to attend the entire meditation service.
ENERGIZATION EXERCISES: The Energization Exercises are a series of standing exercises developed by Paramahansa Yogananda to help prepare for meditation. They are practiced on the chapel patio, in a group, before most meditations. MEDITATION: A leader guides the group through periods of silent meditation and prayer (about 40 min.), and periods of devotional chanting. At the end of the meditation, the group prays for those who are in need of healing, and for world peace. The leader then directs the group in practicing a healing technique. DEVOTIONAL CHANTING: Chanting with deep concentration and devotion draws the attention inward to the altar of God’s presence. Paramahansa Yogananda’s “Cosmic Chants” book is an excellent introduction to chanting and contains the words and music for the chants used in all services. GROUP MEDITATIONS: When we meditate in a group, we honor our fellow meditators, and ourselves, by taking personal responsibility to do our best to keep our bodies still and to keep from distracting others. We can truly become a “spiritual bodyguard” for our Self and for one another, by making our best effort to overcome restlessness.
“Group meditation is a castle that protects the new spiritual aspirants as well as the veteran meditators. Meditating together increases the degree of Self-realization of each member of the group by the law of invisible vibratory exchange of group magnetism.”
– Paramahansa Yogananda
Learn to Meditate Video Series
If you have not yet enrolled for the SRF Lessons, you will find in these videos some basic instructions on how to meditate, which you can use right away to begin experiencing the peace and communion with the Divine that meditation brings.