Empty Bowl Meditation (Agama Nigama Veda)

Empty Bowl Meditation

There are many meditation techniques. I especially like this technique as it focuses is on calming the mind while waking the kundalini shakti, and unfolds a blissful state of awareness. It is easy and effective and can be used daily as a meditation practice.

How to Practice Empty Bowl Meditation

Sit comfortably and quietly in a cross-legged posture facing east or north, with the palms up and placed opened on you knees shaped like empty bowls. Relax your fingers as if you are holding a bowl in each hand. Open the mouth slightly and touch the tongue of the roof of the mouth, behind the front teeth.

Simply watch the movement of the breath, which is the object of awareness. Do not interfere with your breath; just let the lungs do their work with no effort on your part. As you pay attention to your breath, be aware of the tip of your nose and the touch of the air entering the nostrils. Sit quietly and feel you are inside the nose, remaining aware of the movement of air touching the nostrils. Incoming air has a cool touch, while the outgoing air is warm.

After about five minutes, follow the breath with your attention. Go with the air into your nose, throat, lungs, diaphragm, and down behind the belly button, where you will experience a natural ‘stop’ exhalation, as it goes upward from the belly to the diaphragm, lungs, nostrils, which is a second ‘stop’ that is outside the body.

The movement of breath is time. At these stopping points, the breath stops and time stops, and there is only pure existence. Only God (universal life energy) is present and you are surrounded by peace and love. The moment you allow the lungs to breathe and become like an empty bowl, divine lips can touch you and your heart will fill with divine love. God will pour love into you.

Most bowls are full of ambition, competition, thoughts, feelings desires, waves of anger, frustrations, or fear. In Sanskrit, Agama means inhalation and Nigama means exhalation. In these two processes of breath, God is breathing with you and whispering the love divine into the heart of every being. Hence, another name for empty bowl meditation is Agama Nigama Veda.

Practice this meditation for 15 minutes each morning and evening. You may also practice this meditation in a prone position. Spontaneously stay in the “stops between breathing in and out; in whichever stop you feel most comfortable, remain there without effort. In the beginning, it will only be for a fraction of a second, so don't worry if nothing happens. Just do this sincerely every day for a year or so, without expecting anything. Over the days and months you will find your time in each stop naturally prolongs until eventually the inner and outer stops merge at the third eye and everything happens within you.


  • A person should think, “nothing should happen,” then everything will happen on its own accord. This is the skill in the action of meditation. When you stop, naturally and without effort, increase to ninety seconds. In this, you may begin to see the inner light behind the third eye, the blue pearl that is a beautiful dawn on the horizon of bliss. This meditation is a powerful technic that leads to Kevala Kumbhaka, the suspension of breath and thought. Providing calmness to the mind and a deep sense of peace in the heart.
  • On in halation follow the natural breath, with awareness to first stop the breath behind the belly button: stay there for a fraction of a second.
  • During exhalation, follow the breath, with awareness to 2nd stop which is outside the body about 9 inches. Stay there for a fraction of a second


The sole purpose of these articles is to provide information about the tradition of Ayurveda. This information is not intended for use in the diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease.