Introduction to Various Meditations: Tibetan Light Meditation
Tibetan Light Meditation is much like Diekman Contemplation, except in Light Meditation there is an added emphasis on Buddhist spirituality. In both of these meditations, the goal is to break down the identity in order to see the true relation of oneself with an object in front of you. To do this, one observes an object until the barriers you perceive the object through break down. In Tibetan Light Meditation, the object used is a candle.
To engage in this meditation, simply sit and observe a lit candle. Take in its qualities as a whole, and without any presumption as to how they will come across moment-to-moment. For instance, allow the quality of heat coming from the candle to tell you the candle is hot- not the fact that you have known flames to be hot before. Experience, don't anticipate, the candle. By shutting down the analytical side of your observation, new insights will be discovered through immediate feeling, but even these insights also should ultimately be cast aside as your own assumptions of the candle.
Allow the candle to present itself as an alien object, observe it with "baby eyes," and experience each attribute of the candle as a part of its whole ethos- emitting qualities that are uniquely its own and contributing to the entirety of being a candle, and this particular candle itself.
This sort of contemplation, or de-contemplation, allows for exploration of the self in relation to what you observe. What can you notice about the candle for the first time? Where do your assumptions of the candle and the real one begin? What qualities do you and the candle share as things in the room? Observing the candle is used as a hinge for opening up these sorts of questions.
Although this meditation is only the observation of a single candle, the insights could transfer across your entire perspective and experience of the world at large. An observation meditation like Tibetan Light Meditation is useful, because it addresses a foundational question as a thing aware of its own existence- what are you in relation to other things?
Previous Introductions to Various Meditations:
Why Practice Meditation?
Dark Night of the Soul
Exposure to Fear