Meditation FAQ - Farney Healing Arts Center

Woman Meditating by PondIt's impossible for me to quiet my mind. Can meditation really help me? I tried it before and I can't do it!
Yes, meditation will help you. We teach many different techniques, and you will find that some of them may work better for you than others. Meditation isn't something you just sit down and do. It takes some training and practice before you are able to enter the states that most people think as "meditation". There are many benefits to slowing down your mind, even if only for a couple minutes a day. If you feel you aren't reaching a meditative state, you are still getting most of the benefits from meditation by going through the motions. After a couple of sessions, you will find you naturally go deeper and deeper.

 

There are so many meditation classes. How do I know which one is right for me?
If you are new to meditating or want a refresher, start with the 100 level classes.
If you have some skill with meditation and can do a quality meditation on your own, start with the 200 level classes. If you are able to easily enter altered states in your meditations and want some new challenges to work on, take it to the next level with the 300 level classes. The 100's are meant for casual beginners who want exposure to wide variety of meditations. The 200s are meant for committed meditators who want to learn tools and techniques to achieve significant and deep results. The 300s are for serious participants who meditate often and want to truly use the meditations to springboard into states of awareness and experiences defying description.

 

Man Meditating on BlanketHow do the meditation prerequisites work?
Each series has an Introduction course (101, 201, 301) which is recommended before taking other courses in that series. After taking the Introduction course, you can continue with any classes of the same level for as long as you like. When you are ready to move to the next level, the only requirement is that you have taken the first two courses of the level at least once. For example, you should complete 101 and 102 before attempting 200 level classes, and 201 and 202 before attempting 300 level classes. If you feel you have enough experience to skip a prerequisite and our booking system is blocking your registration, just let us know so we can mark the prerequisites as completed on your profile. 

 

How many times do I need to take classes at the same level before moving to the next level?
You only need to take the first two classes at a level once before meeting the prerequisites for the next level. However, we recommend you become familiar and comfortable with the classes at the same level
(beginner, intermediate, or advanced) by taking the meditation class many times before moving on. Each level (beginner, intermediate, and advanced) has over 30 unique lectures and meditations before the content repeats, so there are plenty of learning opportunities to take the class 30+ times. The meditations are always different in the classes, so we recommend taking it until you have mastered the difficulty level before attempting the next level: more difficult and deeper meditations.

 

Beautiful Girl Listening to MeditationI have some meditation experience and want to take intermediate and advanced classes, but the online system tells me I am missing the prerequisites. I don't want to take boring beginner classes! Help!
We have our system configured to require people to take the classes in order. If you already have experience and want to start at intermediate or advanced, that's terrific! Just let us know, and we will be happy to tag your profile with the correct prerequisites. After this action is completed, it is permanent and you will be able to use the online scheduler for your registrations without interruption.

 

What are the Meditation 201 (intermediate) tools used for deeper meditations?
Some of the tools include:

  • Energy Conversion Box - Take all your cares, thoughts, and worries, and learn to lock them away. You won't need them during the meditation, and they will simply get in the way.
  • Resonate Tuning - A vocalization exercise that both raises your energy and quiets the mind.
  • Resonate Energy Balloon (REBAL) - Another exercise that increases your energy and frequency.
  • Affirmations - Affirmations help you achieve your stated intents and desires when you strongly project them out into the universe. Affirmations give the process intent and protection.
  • Countdowns - The countdown is another technique to help you get into the relaxed, meditative states.
  • Body Scans - Scanning and focusing on individual sections of your body is another technique to help you get into a relaxed, meditative state.

 

Tuning Forks ResonateWhat are the meditation tools for?
The energy conversion box technique is to get rid of any thoughts that would interfere with getting into a meditative state; affirmations to give the process intent and protection; resonant tuning (like the sacred Buddhist OM), which uses both a breathing exercise and sound, clears and raises your frequency; many meditations will give a count to 3, 10, 12, etc. The countdown is another technique to help you get into the relaxed, meditative Focus states.

 

What if I'm not able or willing to do Resonant Tuning out loud?
It is important for you to participate in Resonant Tuning. Doing so will help you perceive your nonphysical energy so you may learn to control and use it. Resonant Tuning promotes accelerated gathering of your vibrational energy while reducing internal dialogue. Your discomfort about vocalizing with the exercise will eventually wane.

 

Human Torus Picture from Monroe InstituteWhat if I can't visualize my REBAL?
Visualizing only one way of perceiving. Some people are better able to "feel" their REBAL by simply thinking of themselves surrounded by and filled with tingling bursts of energy. Others might "hear" the crackle of energy or know intuitively that their REBAL is in place. Practice perceiving your REBAL with all five senses to learn which way is the most effective for you.

 

Do I have to do all the preparatory tools/exercises?
Yes, count yourself to Focus 10. Yes, say the affirmations or your own. Yes, resonate tune. Yes, use the energy balloon. If you want to have the best experiences, you need to do the work. The Intermediate/Advanced meditations give you precise frequencies and help you get there, and doing the exercises will greatly help. Think about them like training wheels. The more tools you use, the more successful you will be.

The conversion box, affirmations, resonate tuning, and the energy balloon is what Robert Monroe calls preparatory work. It helps you create a sacred space like a Buddhist getting ready for deep meditation. These are just some of the processes, methods, techniques, and suggestions that Monroe gives to help you. You can change the wording; you can do your own techniques, but you should do a technique like each exercise because the preparatory exercises are extremely powerful.

 

Resonant Energy BalloonWhat should I do if the feeling of "heightened energy" makes me uncomfortable?
Your goal during these exercises is to perceive your nonphysical energy so you can learn to control and use it. You might practice working with your nonphysical energy from an objective, "experimental" frame of mind to ease your discomfort. Speed it up. Slow it down. Move it. Change it. You are in control.

 

How do I know if I am doing the exercises correctly?
These sessions are not about following a specific exercise but about allowing the exercises to open up new perceptions. There is no right way to do an exercise. Your own version of the exercise will work fine. The point is to do something like the exercise. The exercises will help you with the experience and allow you to get more out of the experience.

 

Man MeditatingHow can I be a more effective meditator?
By paying attention to how you feel during the relaxed state and recalling that sensation later on, you can go right back into it. For example, a Buddhist Monk spends 20 years learning to go to a state of bliss; now he can go there instantly by recalling the feeling of bliss or by toning a mantra. Individuals can use different triggers to help them get back to a specific Focus Level (Focus 3, Focus 10, Focus 12, etc.) as each level is different in terms of frequencies, level of relaxation, meditation, and consciousness.

 

What is a Focus Level?
Focus levels are numerical, content-neutral labels for specific altered states of consciousness associated with specific Hemi-Sync® binaural beat combinations defined by The Monroe Institute (TMI). From a physiological point of view, they correspond to specific objectively measurable brainwave frequency distributions.

 

Meditation in the Clouds Surrounded by MusicHow do the Focus Levels feel?
Pay attention to how you feel during all the exercises and meditations. This is not only a suggestion, but following the flow of vibration energy will help you remember how to reenter these states rapidly. The Focus Levels should feel different than the normal waking state. To follow the the flow, you have to pay attention to it, how it feels and vibrates. That is how you can get back by feeling the vibration or frequency again. However, everyone experiences the Focus Levels differently.

 

How do I know if I'm in a particular Focus Level or experiencing what the exercise intends?
Suspend your expectations about Focus Levels and trust that your experiences in a given exercise are exactly as they should be at that time. Everyone perceives the various Focus Levels in their own way. Similarly, no two individuals' experiences are alike. Simply pay attention to subtle changes and feelings of movement within your body, and allow you experiences to unfold. Your experiences may range from cosmic in nature to the mundane. Accept what comes to you, without judgement, and continue to practice with the assurance that all of your experiences are valuable. If the instructions described what your experiences should be, you might discount an important event because it was not mentioned as a possible experience, even though it was a highly meaningful event for you.

 

Dreaming Woman Listening to MeditationWhat if I tend to fall asleep or "click out" during an exercise?
Don't be discouraged. You are learning to maintain a balance between deep relaxation and sleep. If you fall asleep, your subconscious will still experience and benefit from the exercise, but the following are suggestions: Make sure you are rested before doing the exercises (you may need to change the time of day you work with the program.) Splash water on your neck and face prior to the exercise. Put a symbol for sleep in your Energy Conversion Box. If you are lying down, try sitting in a chair or on the floor during the exercise.

Note: You may be "clicking out." This is different from sleep. If you are clicking-out, you will have the sense that no time has passed when you return to conscious awareness. And since your subconscious is actually following and monitoring the meditation, you will return to conscious awareness right before the track ends. Once again, the memory of your experience will be stored even though you have no recall. Clicking-out is a common experience that diminishes as you progress. As you start to practice meditation regularly, you will no longer "click out". If you were actually sleeping, you would still be sleeping when the track ended, and someone would have to wake you up.

 

What is the Monroe Institute®?
The Monroe Institute®, founded by Robert A. Monroe, is internationally known for its work with audio sound patterns that can have dramatic effects on states of consciousness. Monroe observed, during his early research, that certain sounds create a frequency following response in the electrical activity of the brain.

These observations led to some remarkable findings dealing with the very nature of human consciousness. Researchers learn specific sounds could be blended and sequenced to gently lead the brain into various states ranging from deep relaxation or sleep to expanded states of awareness and other "extraordinary" states. This compelling research because the foundation of a noninvasive and easy to use "audio guidance" technology known as "Hemi-Sync®". Robert Monroe's work inspired an entire industry of mind/brain products.

 

Hemi-Sync InfoGraphicWhat is Hemi-Sync®?
Hemi-Sync® is a patented, scientifically and clinically proven audio-guidance technology refined with 50 years of research. Researchers learned that specific sound patterns could lead the brain to various states of consciousness ranging from deep relaxation or sleep to expanded awareness and other extraordinary states. After decades of research, and thousands of lab sessions, the extraordinary Hemi-Sync® process remains unparalleled in its ability to assist us in harnessing our human potential. There are now score of titles incorporating Hemi-Sync® for a wide variety of applications:

  • Meditation
  • Spiritual Growth
  • Expanded Awareness
  • Profound Relaxation
  • Stress Management
  • Heightened Creativity
  • Problem Solving
  • Focused Attention
  • Accelerated Learning
  • Sleep Enhancement
  • Pain Management
  • Enhanced Wellbeing
  • Pregnancy/Childbirth
  • Behavior Modification


The audio-guidance process works through the generation of complex, multilayered audio signals, which at together to create a resonance that is reflected in unique brain-wave form characteristic of specific states of consciousness. The result is a focused, whole-brain state known as hemispheric synchronization or Hemi-Sync®, where the left and right hemisphere are working together in a state of coherence. Hemispheric synchronization does occur nature in daily life but typically only for random, brief periods of time. Hemi-Sync® can assist individuals in achieving and sustaining this highly productive coherent brain-wave state. As an analogy, lasers produce focuses, coherent light. Hemi-Sync® process a focused, coherent mind, which is an optimal condition for improving human performance.

Specific combinations of Hemi-Sync® signals, for example, can help individual achieve laserlike focus and concentration. Different Hemi-Sync® signals are used to facilitate profound relaxation, focused attention, expanded awareness, or other desired states. Depending on the interested goals: music, verbal guidance, or subtle sound effects are combined with Hemi-Sync® to strengthen its effectiveness. User remain in total control as these recordings do not contain subliminal messages. You are always in control.

For more information, visit the website: www.hemi-sync.com.

 

Woman Meditating in the CloudsWill Hemi-Sync® become a crutch?
No, absolutely not. Hemi-Sync® exercises are like training wheels on a bicycle: a wonder for practice, but unnecessary as you learn to ride far and free. In a way similar to biofeedback, you can benefit from Hemi-Sync® when not listening to an exercise. You can learn to trigger a change in consciousness and obtain a desired state by taking a deep breath and remembering the sensations you had during an exercise. The more you practice this technique, the easier and more effective it will become.

 

I am aware of a buzzing or pressure in my forehead and/or an acceleration of my heartbeat. Is this normal?
These phenomena are common for some people in respond to the Hemi-Sync® process. Remember, you are expanding you awareness. You may, therefore, become more conscious of your heartbeat, breathing, or other physical sensations. Many people find such enhanced awareness a comforting link to physical reality that allows them to move more confidently into other states of consciousness. If you continue to feel distracted, put your distractions into your Energy Conversion Box. If you experience any discomfort, verify you have the volume just loud enough for you to hear the verbal instructions, but not too loud.

 

Man Meditating InsideWhat is the hissing or swooshing sound I hear when listening to Hemi-Sync®?
The sound you are hearing is intentional. While several different distributions can be used depending on the Hemi-Sync® track, you are often hearing "pink noise" or "brown noise." Technically, it is a random distribution of all the frequencies the human ear can hear and is provided as a bed for the Hemi-Sync® signals.

 

Would it be beneficial to combine mind-altering drugs with Hemi-Sync® or meditation?
No. Hemi-Sync® exercises are designed so you may learn to control your states of consciousness. Drugs would simply interfere with that control. Also, your rational ability to interpret and comprehend your experiences would be compromised by the use of mild-altering substances.

 

Woman Meditating on BeachDo Hemi-Sync® exercises contain subliminal messages?
No. Hemi-Sync® recordings contain no subliminal messages. Occasionally, you will hear a verbal message at a very low volume during a "sleep" period so as not to startle you. This, however, is simply a repetition of previously heard information.

 

What are the techniques The Monroe Institute uses to get results?
Robert Monroe shows you a process with many different techniques to help you get to different deep meditative states. In the exercises, Robert Monroe is trying to help you go in and out of the states and remember the states. Even in simple suggestions, "Now, think how nice would be to float...". This is another suggestion and feeling sensation. "Now turn slowly as if you're a log...detach floating up...". This is a major technique for most people to go out of body (OBE). Some go out through their head, some their feet, there are many ways. There are other techniques to help. Sometimes it doesn't work until later in the series. "Now feel and remember how you are...". The Monroe Institute's cues, counts, and other techniques are important because this memory is how you can quickly reenter the Focus Levels and master them.

 

Black Man Meditating on CouchIs there any overlap between Beginner (100s), Intermediate (200s), Advanced (300s)?
Yes! Each meditation has a particular "home" in the 100s, 200s, or 300s. However, some content fits better on the border of two levels and may appear in both classes. In addition, some of the best content is in two of the classes, so you don't miss out on it just because you graduated a level. Each level has over 30 weeks of unique content, so there is plenty of fresh content to continue to expand your horizons in each level.

 

I want to get started with serious meditations but I am just getting started. Can I register for 300 level classes?
In order to be successful at our meditation program, we strongly recommend starting at the 200s. If the class is too basic after attending one or two sessions, then move up to the 300s. If you feel you have enough experience to skip our prerequisites and start with the 300s, please see a staff member or call us to have your profile updated. You will not be to register for these classes online until we update your profile.

 

Woman Laying on Grass MeditatingWhat can you expect from the using Gateway Experience?
"As much or as little as you put into it. Some discover themselves and thus live more completely, more constructively. Others reach levels of awareness so profound that one such experience is enough for a lifetime. Still other become seekers-after-the-truth and add an on-going adventure to their daily activity." --Robert A. Monroe

To get the most out of the Gateway Experience, work on yourself energetically, and learn how to relax.

The exercises, especially what Monroe calls the preparatory work (creating sacred space and raising your frequency), assist the Hemi-Sync® in gently leading the brain to a higher range Delta where TMI mediator's and Buddhists Monks have been brain mapped. This is a more powerful state than Theta which is what most meditators achieve.

Since the gateway works with higher Delta (deep Delta is sleep), the Hemi-Sync® also works to keep one consciously aware. To get the most out of a session, you want to be consciously aware; otherwise, you may fall asleep and miss experiences. Listen to the gateway session when you are well rested, in the morning or on weekend, as Monroe will bring you back to a fully awake, alert state at the end of the session. This also teaches you to go deep but come back grounded and not spacey.

You don't have to spend a lot of time on the experiences; just enough time to be able to remember the information, as Monroe will ask you to do some of the exercises later. The exercises help with the experience and allow you to get more out of the experience. Some individuals continue to repeat a session because they are trying to do an exercise perfectly. These sessions are not about following a specific exercise but about allowing the exercises to open up new perceptions for you. There is no right way to do an exercise. Your own version of the exercise will work fine. The point is to do something like the exercise.

 

Will HemiSync® cause me to go "out of body" (OBE)?
Everyone's experiences are unique to where they currently area. After you do some or all of the meditations and processes, you will have learned how to get really deep, and you need to be receptive to the experiences you have. You will be exposed to specific vibrations in a really receptive state to help you detach, float, or have your mind drift, or astral body separate. Over time with practice and openness, many things are possible.

In Introduction to Focus 10, Robert Monroe gives you a 10-point countdown relaxation exercise to get you prepared to go into deep relaxation. Later, the "energy balloon exercise," is a visualization exercise that increases your frequency. To get "out of body" (OBE), including deep meditative states, requires a higher frequency. Each Focus Level you learn and become familiar with is a progressively higher frequency. Whether you see it or not, when you visualize something, it is present in another state. Working on getting deeper in each Focus Level will help you get closer to your first OBE.

Some people can experience "out of body" (OBE) in Focus Level 10 or 12 or in other exercises that explore different states of consciousness. You experience these states in your sleep all the time, but you don't remember. However, not everyone may experience an OBE.

 

Out of Body - Flying out of BedWill The Gateway Experience cause me to go "out of body" (OBE)?
Everyone's experiences are unique to where they currently area. After you do some or all of the meditations and processes, you will have learned how to get really deep, and you need to be receptive to the experiences you have. You will be exposed to specific vibrations in a really receptive state to help you detach, float, or have your mind drift, or astral body separate. Over time with practice and openness, many things are possible.

In the second meditation, Introduction to Focus 10, Robert Monroe gives you a 10-point countdown relaxation exercise to get you prepared to go into deep relaxation. Later, the "energy balloon exercise," is a visualization exercise that increases your frequency. To get "out of body" (OBE), including deep meditative states, requires a higher frequency. Each Focus Level you learn and become familiar with is a progressively higher frequency. Whether you see it or not, when you visualize something, it is present in another state. Working on getting deeper in each Focus Level will help you get closer to your first OBE.

Some people can experience "out of body" (OBE) in Focus Level 10 or 12. Later, in Wave III, there is Lift Off and First Stage Separation which are exercises that continue to help you experience and explore different states of consciousness, and some people experience it there. You experience these states in your sleep all the time, but you don't remember. The Gateway Experience tries to give you a consciousness experience of these states you experience when you are normally asleep. However, not everyone may experience an OBE, even after completing the series.

 

What if I can't have en out-of-body (OBE) experience?
Don't despair. Please know that not everyone will have a conscious out of body (OBE) experience. It takes a lot of practice for most, and many of us have hidden fear that hold us back. Also, if you try too hard for an OBE, the intense effort can become the very distraction that holds you back. Be nonchalant about OBEs. They are just a small part of our programs for self-exploration and personal growth.

 

Floating Out of BodyHow do I control an OBE?
If you set a goal before you begin, you won't need to decide what to do once you are out. If an OBE happens spontaneously, remember that thoughts are actions in the nonphysical state. Experiment with thinking of someone and contacting his/her energy, rather than arriving at a geographic destination. You may return to your body at any time by thinking about rejoining your body and/or moving a finger or toe.

 

When I am out of body, can I help someone else have an OBE?
Participants have reported developing the ability to do this. Experiment. You and another person might try patterning for synchronicity in your OBEs.

 

What does the non-physical body look like?
The nonphysical body may be perceived as a ball of energy, a misty form, or a human shape. Typically, it will appear as something you are comfortable with.

 

Heavenly Light Coming Down to EarthIs God appearing when I "see" a flood of light during an exercise?
The perception of light suggests that your potential for non physical awareness is developing. Such light is widely reported by explorers of higher consciousness and people who have had near death experiences. The light is often accompanied by feelings of euphoria, a oneness with the Universe or a sense of overwhelming love. A Buddhist might associate this experience with Buddha; a Muslim with Allah or Mohammad; a Christian, with Christ. We do not endorse any particular interpretation or meaning; rather we encourage you to find your own.

 

Is the Gateway Experience and Hemi-Sync® beneficial to those who practice other meditative techniques?
Yes, absolutely. Many long-term mediators have indicated that Hemi-Sync® facilitates the ease with which they may obtain a deep meditative state and their ability to sustain that state. In addition, the Gateway Experience is widely considered the best program for developing, exploring, and applying expanded states of awareness. Everyone can benefit from the tools and guidelines provided.

 

Woman Meditating in Musical EssenceHow many times should I do an exercise or repeat an exercise or wave before going onto the next?
This varies from person to person. You should become familiar and comfortable with an exercise and allow your intuition to guide you as to when to move on. It isn't necessary to master an exercise before progressing and you can always return for more practice.

 

The Gateway Experience changed my life. How can I convince a skeptic it is worth trying?
In any personal development program, without any interest or desire the discipline that leads to success is lacking. The Gateway Experience training series can supply the tools and guidelines, but participants must have an openness and willingness to explore in order to succeed. We suggest you allow your own personal growth to inspire others while realizing that not everyone will be interested in exploring expanded states of awareness. With that said, many of our most enthusiastic Gateway Experience participants were skeptics at one time. You may with to introduce other to the Hemi-Sync® process with a more "mainstream" exercise, such as Catnapper or Concentration. You can purchase all the Hemi-Sync® products online if we don't offer the classes or sessions you are looking for.

 

Child on Bed MeditatingIs the Gateway Experience safe for children?
That depends on the maturity of the child. Many parents have reported good results using the Gateway Experience with children. Use your own discretion for children who are 10 years or older. We encourage parents to work with their children and to monitor their progress. Only children interested in the program should attend. Children who are not interested in the program don't learn the tools and often cause disruptions for other people.