Using Lectio Divina to Enhance Your Happiness
Lectio Divina is an ancient Christian (Benedictine) meditation; it is a form of meditative prayer called “sacred seeing.” We will use a modified version of the process here.
Follow the steps noted below.
- Sit quietly in meditative form, calmly abiding yourself here now. After a few minutes ask this question: Do I want to be a happier person? Listen to what arises from your true self.
- Remain in meditative relaxation. Now after a few minutes come to fully awake state, and write a brief paragraph on how you can become a happier person. Happiness it relative, so even if you are somewhat satisfied now, you could be happier in the future. So please write that brief paragraph.
- Now relax your mind and body; take a few long, deep slow breaths. Relax your jaw, neck, and shoulders. Now simply slowly read your statement five times. See if more becomes clear to you.
- Now relax yourself a bit deeper, and use free association to establish more details about how you could become a happier person. Add any significant new information to your earlier statement.
- Now with full conscious awareness and keen cognitive clarity, answer each of the following questions. Write a response for each question below. Read it after you write it.
- What is the WHAT of your happier state?
- WHO is the what of your happier state?
- What is the WHERE of your happier state?
- What is the HOW of your happier state?
- WHEN will you take initial steps to become happier?
- WHAT is your first step?
- Now relax again, yes once again. Slowly read everything you have written up to this point. Read it five times, and go a little deeper in your concentration each time.
- Finally, write a brief story in a brief paragraph on how you will become a happier person. Read it.
Anthony R. Quintiliani, PhD., LADC
From the Eleanor R. Liebman Center for Secular Meditation in Monkton, Vermont and the Home of The Monkton Sangha
Author of Mindful Happiness