Guruji, when I sit for meditation I experience multiple obstacles –I feel sleepy, my legs start paining, my thoughts keep multiplying, I start hearing all kinds of sounds, etc. Where as if I am doing some other work like - when cooking or reading or playing video games, etc., I am so involved with it that even if a loud bang happens near me, it does not affect me. I continue doing what I was doing, without even a pause. How can I remove these obstacles to my meditation?

The very purpose of meditation is to still the mind; to keep it steady and relaxed. In order to achieve the desired results, meditation should be done twice a day for a minimum of 30 minutes – during the early morning hours -preferably during Brahma muhurtha, and before going to bed, as a regular practice. For anything you do or practice, results take time to become visible. In the mean-time irritations and obstacles happen naturally. The obstacles are inviting you to develop your will-power to continue your practice despite the interruptions. As you apply your will-power against these obstacles, and continue to sit for your meditation routine, slowly you will observe that these obstacles no longer appear before you, and you are able to continue your meditation without any interruptions.
First and foremost, some good practices need to be observed before starting your meditation in the early morning. Prepare yourself for the meditation routine with some vigorous exercises such as jumping or shaking yourself vigorously, so as to awaken every cell in your body. This will ensure that all the cells in your body are in a receptive state to absorb the cosmic energy you imbibe during meditation. Taking a bath before meditation is recommended. During the early stages of your routine, meditation may not happen immediately, so do not be upset or frustrated. Just keep on witnessing all the obstacles that confront you. Continue to practice without any expectations. Just go with the flow. Prepare for it and practice it steadily with complete will-power, each day. If you follow your spiritual discipline religiously, you shall overcome every obstacle that appears on your spiritual path.
Start your spiritual routine with a round of Pranayama as taught at the Ashram, followed by Yogasanas. This will loosen up your body and make it flexible. Shake up your body as advised earlier – to awaken all cells in your body – or take a quick bath from head to toe, if feasible. Sleepiness and laziness will no longer trouble you during meditation. Consume less quantity of food through the day, especially eat early during the previous evening. Eat healthy and satvik food. Consume more of liquid diet. Always be in a surrender-attitude towards God and Guru. All the above practices will help you in clearing up the obstacles to your daily meditation routine.

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