Meditation should be begun with a short, silent prayer to the Overself, humbly beseeching guidance and Grace. This may be done either by kneeling in the Western fashion or by sitting in the Oriental fashion. After offering his prayer, the aspirant should sit down in the position he customarily uses in meditation, close his eyes, and try to forget everything else. He may then form a mental picture of his own face and shoulders, as though he were looking at himself from an impersonal point of view. He should think of the person in the picture as a stranger. Let him first consider the other's faults and weaknesses, but, later, as a changed person, endowed with ideal qualities, such as calmness, aspiration, self-mastery, spirituality, and wisdom. In this way, he will open a door for the Higher Self to make its messages known to him in the form of intuitions. He should be prepared to devote years to intense efforts in self-examination and self-improvement. This is the foundation for the later work. Once the character has been ennobled, the way to receiving guidance and Grace will be unobstructed.
-- Notebooks Category 4: Elementary Meditation > Chapter 4: Meditative Thinking > # 219