The purpose of this exercise is to train the mind to concentrate upon a given subject for longer periods of time without allowing distracting thoughts to enter. This improves memory and comprehension. You cannot meditate without concentration.
Set aside a period of time, such as early morning or before retiring, for this exercise. Whatever time is chosen, try to stick to it each day. Pick a quiet spot where you will not be disturbed.
Sit quietly in a chair with a hard back and just take it easy for a few minutes letting your thoughts slowly come to a halt.
Then, looking at an orange (a real orange, not a picture of an orange) which you have placed on a stand or clear table before you at about 1 ½ feet from you, examine slowly and completely the surface of the orange.
Then, letting your eyes slowly drift to the center of the orange, look within it as if you are really looking inside the orange.
Let your eyes remain constant as you look within it and examine the various segments, shapes, colors, and sizes of the pieces and the seeds within the orange.
Then after you have done this for a few minutes, examine a seed and take it down to its shell and examine its many layers.
Then looking at the seed, see how it would look placed in the ground, then sprouting, bearing roots, and finally growing to a small tree, then a mature tree bearing a blossom which blossoms into a fruit. You again have the orange. Let this be your exercise.
If at any time during the exercise your attention drifts to another subject, stop immediately and go back to the beginning, letting your thoughts drift out and slowly stop and then begin again.
Do not stop and start again more than 3 times in one sitting. If focus is not kept after 3 tries, discontinue the session and try again later in the day.
The completed exercise should take between 10-15 minutes a day.