About 12 years ago my husband and I became certified Reiki I practitioners. A remarkable experience and a wonderfully spiritual activity. During that time, our Reiki Master taught the basics of meditation, leading us on Guided Meditations. The most important lessons involved grounding. I still use her techniques for grounding oneself before meditation, before circle casting, before doctor appointments, or whenever I feel the need. (Grounding excess energy after spell work or ritual is also an important practice...but I am referring to the act of grounding oneself before meditation)
The need to "anchor" oneself to the mundane world before embarking on a meditation is not about fear of losing one's self on the astral plane or becoming disconnected from reality. I have read books that warn of this happening and, frankly, that scared the bejeebers out of me. Fortunately I have also read authors that say it is impossible for this to happen. I am pretty certain that there are a lot of people who truly believe you can be "lost" during a meditative state and would argue this with me. That is okay. I believe that I cannot lose myself, therefore I won't. Perhaps naive, perhaps incorrectly informed. The fact is, I have been doing this for a long time, and I am here to tell the tale.
I ground myself to bring my awareness into the moment. That is to say, I go through the steps, beginning with the acts of "Focus", "Center", "Breathe" and then to the simple techniques I learned that keep me aware of the Here and the Now, so I feel comfortable and safe to allow myself to reach a meditative state. It is all very personal, and each must find their own way. What works for me may not work for another.
The important thing is to just do it. It takes practice and patience, as the mind wants to jump around into all the stuff that is going on; grocery lists, to-do lists, last night's tv show, write that letter, pay those bills. Grounding myself is the signal that tells my mind...time to relax, slow down, focus....center.....breathe.....
Meditation and Grounding...a good subject for discussion. A wonderful practice. I highly recommend it.