My question is addressed to Nayaswami Mukti. While doing the exercise of superconcentration that she described, I find that I don’t feel a real connection with God. Could you please tell me what I could do to feel it? Also, I understood that we can count 12 times while holding the breath out, and repeating mentally, I am Spirit, bliss. It is difficult for me not to breath during all that time. And then, I might have misunderstood, but should I repeat the exercise 12 times?
There are two aspects to your question which reflect the two aspects of any spiritual practice. There is how to do it — the details if you like — and there is how to tune into the divine presence, which is the reason for doing any practice.
First, some details. The meditation technique called Hong-Sau actually has three components. There are preliminary techniques that help prepare the mind and body to meditate. There is the meditation technique of concentration on the flow of breath adding the Hong Sau mantra. Then there is letting go of the technique and resting in and expanding into any aspect of the divine presence that has been awakened by use of the technique. It seems you have mixed the preliminary techniques and the Hong-Sau concentration practice together.
We use a count with one of the preliminary techniques (even-count breathing), but we adjust the count to fit our natural breath span as we breathe through the nose. So it may be most natural to mentally count 4 on inhale, 4 hold, 4 on exhale and begin again. The point of the technique is to relax the mind and withdraw the energy inward. We only do this even-count breathing for 4-6 rounds or so before we let go of controlling the breath and move to Hong-Sau concentration.
Hong-Sau involves watching, observing, concentrating on flow of breath at the place in the nose where it is most clearly felt and allowing the breath to flow naturally without any control. The breath will gradually slow down, and pauses between breaths may occur as your awareness becomes more inward.
So you can see they are quite different techniques. I have just touched on a few points here. I encourage you to take a look at our free Meditation Mini-Course which will explain the complete Hong Sau technique in detail. It is an easy and powerful technique to do.
The second part of your question is how to feel the divine presence. God is always with us: the essence of every particle of our being. The main barrier to feeling this presence is restlessness, so stillness, relaxation and deep awareness are all essential. That is why meditation technique can be so helpful.
I encourage you to refine your meditation technique further. Make meditation a regular part of every day. Each time you sit for meditation have the expectation that this is the time when you will experience deep peace or calmness or light or another of the divine aspects. Enjoy the process of ‘becoming better’ at meditation. Don’t allow frustration in. No effort is ever wasted! In enjoyment you will open a door for connection with God.