THE RELAXATION RESPONSE
You are a creature of habit and one of your many habits is the relaxation that you undergo every day as you fall asleep ... in fact this is one of your strongest habits ... because you've done it every day of your life.
Whether you realize it or not, you have perfected this habit through repitition and you are very good at it.
To invoke this habit all you have to do is to trick your body into believing that it is preparing for sleep.
To trick the mind all you have to do is to recreate the conditions that you go through every night ... as an example consider the famous experiments of the Russian scientist Pavlov ... by ringing a bell every time a dog was fed the experimenter could instill a deep rooted "thinking habit into the animal's mind ... after awhile the food could be removed but the dog would salivate anyway whenever it heard the bell ring.
In the same way you can remove the process of sleep but still cause your body to loosen it's muscles and relax.
Virtually all forms of mind expansion use the relaxation response as a basis.
A person experiencing the relaxation response turns off all the hormones and behaviors that are making him/her nervous. Basically any kind of meditation will cause it.