Fortress of Solitude

































































Welcome to the Fortress of Solitude!

In medieval times, it was a custom for Christian men and women to sequester themselves for awhile in a castle, fortress or monastery to rejuvenate their spiritual “batteries.” The journey was usually a long and arduous one, their destination being far from homes and jobs. This tradition continues today with retreats sponsored by churches or other groups as a service to their members. And even corporations sponsor retreats for their employees; these are not of a religious nature, but nonetheless afford a time of rest and reflection far from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

In the East, it has been common for millennia for every man, woman and child to be taught simple techniques that could produce the calming and regenerative effects similar to those of a retreat, but in one's home or office. The West is beginning to see the value of this and many offices offer stress relief seminars, teaching similar techniques to those below.

So we offer as our gift to you a few simple, short exercises that we know will be of benefit in your life if practiced regularly. Many of our members have reaped the rewards of these techniques; we hope you will, also.

“Be strong, and enter into your own body: for there your foothold is firm. Consider it well, O my heart! Go not elsewhere. . . . Put all imaginations away and stand fast in that which you are. As the seed is within the tree, and within the seed are the flowers, the fruits, and the shade, so the seed is within the body, and within that seed is the body again.” 


To Enter the Fortress of Solitude, the mind must be calm. There is a simple yet effective way to achieve this state.

Just sit or lie down and simply breathe naturally, that's all.

When you have relaxed a bit, lightly focus your attention on your breathing. Just be aware of your breath as you inhale and exhale.

Nothing else ..... just your breath………

Let your mind “ride” in and out on it……..relax…… don't force it.

Seems easy? However, if you're like most people who first try this technique, you'll find it's not as easy as it appears. Other thoughts may invade, vying for your attention. Sounds may intrude, even aromas. You may become aware of an itch, right there in the middle of your back where it's almost impossible to scratch! Don't worry. Scratch that itch, acknowledge those thoughts, sounds and whatever else may be hovering in your consciousness, and then just let them pass by. Then just return to your breath.

You may become exasperated after only a few minutes and say, “I can't do this.” Fine—stop for now. You can always return later for another try. The old adage, “practice makes perfect” is the key. You didn't grow up over night, did you? So don't be discouraged if your first effort seems like a miserable failure. Like many endeavors, the effect of practice is cumulative. So keep at it; you can do it! If you can achieve only 15 minutes of uninterrupted contemplation of your breath, you will have achieved more than 95% of all who attempt this practice.


The Fortress of Solitude

Once you have mastered the breathing technique above (i.e., about 15 minutes of uninterrupted contemplation) you are prepared to enter the Fortress. Let your mind drift effortlessly from your breath and begin to create the following image in your mind.

Imagine approaching a huge fortress. The details of appearance are not important as it may be as plain or elaborate as you wish…….

It is surrounded by a moat; there's a drawbridge, too. At your command, the drawbridge is lowered, and you cross . . . . on foot, horseback, cart or wagon, however you are comfortable.

As you cross the moat you look down and see all manner of evil and any negative thoughts swirling beneath you. Even though most would turn back, you hold your head high and continue on your journey.

You have now entered into the Fortress, leaving all the evil behind you. Before you is a huge hall, lined with doors. Speak your name in your mind, and one of the doors begins to glow softly. This room is yours and yours alone…...

As you approach, the door swings open to admit you. You enter and see before you a grail (or any vessel) with a shaft of light shining into it. You now pick up the grail and drink heartily. Imagine the light flowing through your body, into every fiber of your being.

Content and refreshed, you set the vessel down and notice that the shaft of light returns and fills it to the brim. Now seat yourself comfortably and meditate, contemplate or just simply BE. Perhaps your eyes are closed or perhaps they are open, just enjoy your favorite place!

When you are ready to leave, you once again pick up the grail, drink the soothing contents and depart. Now, as you cross the drawbridge you will notice that the water of the moat is clear and calm and that there is no sign of any evil or negativity. You are now at peace, both internally and spiritually…….

Slowly return your mind to your breath and end your meditation in the usual way……….

May the Light of Lights enfold you!


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