The Prayer Swing

The Prayer Swing is like the Head Swing, but with the eyes closed.

The Prayer Swing is very similar to the Head Swing, the main difference being that it is mostly done with the eyes closed:

The Prayer Swing

Sit at a desk with your elbows resting on some cushions - this will also allow you to do some Palming both before and after.

After you finish Palming keep your eyes closed and bring your hands out in front of you. You can clasp them together in the style of praying, but the primary aim is simply to allow your hands to have easy support from each other.

Eyes Open . . .

Take a good look at your hands. They should be about eyelevel: look at the shape, the corners, the textures of your skin – see how they are combined and enfolded. Be interested, and allow the impression of your hands to reach deep into your memory.

Eyes Closed . . .

With your eyes gently shut, continue to register and remember the presence of your hands. Wait a few moments then breathing gently and without hurry, slowly turn your head from left to right and right to left. Keep going.

You may notice that your eyes start to move independently - trying to either look ahead of your movement (further to the left or further to the right) or to stick and drag back to where your hands are; the aim now is to give your eyes the time to calm down and what this usually means is to go a little slower.

The principles of the movement are exactly the same as with the Long Swing and Head Swing - to allow your eyes to rest calmly in alignment with your head. Thinking of a nose pencil, third eye, or distant moving object are all supportive methods to enable the eyes to be calm (see Head Swing).

How it looks . . .

Key points:
  • Go slowly and breathe.
  • Take particular note of how your eyes feel when you stop, start, or change direction.
  • You can open your eyes from time to time to check if you are looking straight ahead.

When you feel your eyes are calm, gently allow the awareness of your hands to grow - so that you experience an easy apparent oppositional movement of the hands.

Let things move

As the movement you experience is in the imagination and the eyes are not affected by visual edges, it become possible to expand the movement of the Prayer Swing very easily. Logically, your hands are attached to your wrists and forearms, leading to the cushion under your elbows, your lap or the desk you're resting on - each of these items also can be experienced as moving. Let your awareness expand step by step; if you suddenly find the movement locking down, come back to a more basic movement.

With a little practise it is possible to get your whole room moving, the building you're in, the surrounding country, the world, and even the stars above. With a little more practise it's even possible to know that your head is still, and everything really is actually moving.

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Learn more about other techniques

Palming

Perhaps the simplest of all the techniques, Palming is also regarded as a foundation for learning how to relax the eyes and mind.

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Sunning

Sunning is the simplest application of light to the eyes, this technique provides a similar foundation for the eyes as Palming.

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The Swings

The Swings introduce the vision and mind to movement in the world. This section contains descriptions of five different types of visual swing.

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