Q: What is the purpose of waking up early in the morning at 4am. One of my friends wakes up at 3am. I am sure there must be some important reason for this. Could you explain please?
Swami Sivananda, “4 am and 6 am is termed as Brahma-Muhurta. Because it is favourable for meditation on God or Brahman, it is called Brahma-Muhurta. At this particular hour the mind is very calm and serene. It is free from worldly thoughts, worries and anxieties. The mind is like a blank sheet of paper and comparatively free from worldly Samaskaras. It can be very easily moulded at this time before worldly distractions enter the mind. Further, the atmosphere also is charged with more Sattva at this particular time. There is no bustle and noise outside. (pg. 134, Concentration & Meditation)
Q: Should I take a bath before starting meditation?
Swami Sivananda, “…If you are strong enough, if you are hale and hearty, if the weather and season can permit, if you are in the prime of youth, take a bath either in cold, lukewarm or hot water as desired. Otherwise, wash your hands, feet and face with cold water. Do Achamanam (sipping water with mantra ‘Om Achyutaya Namah, Om Anantaya Namah, Om Govindaya Namah.’) (pg. 134, Concentration & Meditation)
“…Answer the calls of nature quickly. Cleanse the teeth quickly. Do not waste much time in cleansing the teeth and taking bath. Be quick. Hurry up. get ready soon. The Brahmamuhurta will pass away quickly. You must utilise this precious time in Japa and meditation. (pg. 70, Concentration & Meditation)