Wednesday, 28 September 2016


There is a meditation technique known as the Reading Skip Jump. In normal meditation, the meditator quietly contemplates the scene before them, a room, a field, the sky, endeavouring to hold the entire scene in their field of vision at once. By meditating on the external, silence descends and an inner peace is attained.

A change comes when one first observes oneself observing. It can be disconcerting to begin with, to hold the scene before you in your perceptual range, including oneself and one's own drifting thoughts, and feel removed from the scene like some form of out of body experience. It takes a little practice, but this view of the world soon becomes comfortable, even comforting. The stillness becomes deeper. The meditator becomes the 'Watcher'.

The Reading Skip Jump takes this technique to its next plateau. The adherent adopts a comfortable position and begins to read from a novel or other descriptive work (there should be no pictures - this is important). In reading, one starts to visualise the scene being described. The skill is then to incorporate the imagery into the general framework experienced in becoming the 'Watcher'. The meditator meditates on the scene before them, whilst also meditating on the narrative in their head. Some practitioners have reported catching glimpses of the action out of the corner of their eye in the real world.

But why, I hear you cry, is it called the Reading Skip Jump? It is said that the true masters of the Reading Skip Jump can flip their perception at the critical juncture, tricking the mind into thinking that the fictional is the actual and the actual, fictional. In doing so, they are propelled, with a skip and a jump, into the fabric of the novel. From there, any number of new adventures are possible. It is at this stage that the 'Watcher' truly becomes the 'Reader'.

I know this trick as the Reverse Read (aka the Read Reverse), but what the hell do I know?

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