Samatha – Music for guided meditation, Vol. 1-3.

Composition and programming, Jaakko Autio / Vocals, Reetta Karhunen / Vocals, Hilla Väyrynen / Cello, Mika Seppänen / Saxophone, Anna Voutilainen / Piano and strings, Jaakko Autio / Mastering, Tuomas Elsilä aka. Roisto / Photos, Jaakko Autio / The work was supported by Taike / The music was composed and recorded during the residency periods in Nart (Narva, Estonia) and Old Mine Residency (Outokumpu) / Music for guided meditation, Vol. 1-3 was created by improvising together with musicians.

Samatha (Sanskrit: शमथ) is a Buddhist term that is often translated as the “tranquility of the mind”, or “mind-calmness”. Samatha basically refers to creating conditions for meditation or insight to occur.

Music for guided meditation, Vol 1-3 is made so that people can align back to themselves, body and mind. The music I compose can be used in guided yoga or meditation classes. Or you can listen to music from speakers at home or with headphones while moving around the city.

Ātāpī means Gentle persistence. It’s an increase of the intensity level of our intention so that we shift beyond our habitual mode into a growth-oriented state of awareness. Without the intimacy, the contemplation falls short, and won’t help us reach the depths of insight.

Vitakka refers to momentary concentration or awareness where the body-mind connection has not yet become unified. The word Vitakka contains the promise of gathering the body-mind and remembering the value of one’s own presence. Even those who have practiced meditation for a long time have to face Vitakka at the beginning of each meditation.

Vicāra means sustained state of awareness. State of presence where the meditator’s intention rests within the body. Sometimes Vicāra is simply called access concentration. Vicāra is the first step on the journey to meet one’s heart. Vicāra helps the yogi to deepen his/her intimacy with his body-mind and heart (Citta). As the internal climate warms up, self-confidence increases and energy (piti and sukkha) starts to gather. The journey to self has begun.

Upekkhā means the experience of equanimity where the inner and the outer space are experienced as one. The heart is strengthened to withstand the rub of life and you can touch the difficult and unwanted matters with your intimate self. Whats special about equanimity of the power to lightly renew emotional pain into wisdom.

Karuṇā (Sanskrit: करुणा) refers to compassion. Dwelling in karuṇā is a means for attaining a happy present life and heavenly rebirth. The pleasure of karuṇā comes from the healed heart of being in touch with inner innocence. Karuṇā opens an understanding to truly enjoy others fortune and state of being. The compassion towards oneself and others goes beyond form, it is a sweet remembrance to appreciate and enjoy life in the altar of impermanence.

Mettā is the flower of your practice, the radiating form of your inner self. Metta happens in interpersonal space between you and others. The other can be a human, object of mind, plant, animal or even gravity. Mettā comes from the understanding that we are surrounded by an infinite amount of touches. Nothing and no one is alone in this infinite universe, never was and never will be.

Bodhicitta is a silent conviction that our hearts capacity beholds a larger emotional range than the separate self. Bodhicitta, refers to a mind (citta) that is aimed at awakening (bodhi), with wisdom and compassion for the benefit of all sentient beings. Bodhicitta is the attitude to strive for a greater intimacy with one’s body-mind by giving attention to presence. A healthy body-mind connection creates the conditions to recognize one’s own unique heart and finally consciousness.

A person who works with the qualities such as loving-kindness (metta), compassion (karuṇā), empathetic joy (mudita) and equanimity (upekkha) can be called A bodhisattva. A bodhisattva refers to anyone who has generated a spontaneous wish and compassionate mind to attain non-dual intimacy for the benefit of all sentient beings.

Śūnyatā (Sanskrit: शून्यता) translated most often as emptiness. It refers to intimacy where there is no room left for a separate self. Śūnyatā is the most inner experience of the nature of the universal heart or consciousness. You can experience and feel the kiss of the universe, listen to it sing, but there is a catch. After the experience is over, you will forget the most inner touch of the merge. That’s why the most intimate connection is called Śūnyatā, emptiness. Because nobody can remember it afterwards. But it does renew your understanding of loving-kindness (metta), compassion (karuṇā), empathetic joy (mudita) and equanimity (upekkha).

Anattā (Sanskrit: अनात्मन्) refers to “non-self. It is usually translated as a self that has gone through the process of recognizing that everything is impermanent. The beauty of Anatta is similar to shunyata, you can experience Anatta, you can recognize that no permanent self or essence can be found in any phenomenon. But while doing so you are in touch with the eternal unchanging smile of eternity.

The experience is described as very tender and wholesome. It helps to accept one’s own temporary place in the cycle of life. Although we are built from temporary fabric, through love we can touch and comfort each other in a way that makes our temporal existence feel ok.

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