For thousands of years, people have been using meditation to develop an awareness of the present. It refers to practices that are aimed at connecting the breath and the body, enhancing your attention and focus, and helping you accept difficult emotions.
It can go as far as altering consciousness. Almost every community around the world practices meditation, and it has remained relevant because it offers several physical as well as mental benefits, ranging from strengthening immunity to relieving stress.
It is important to note that although meditation is included in spiritual traditions as a part of their practices and teachings, the activity itself does not have its roots in any faith or religion. It may be an ancient tradition, but it is practiced worldwide because it creates inner harmony and calmness.
In the demanding lives and hectic schedules of today, meditation is increasingly becoming a coping technique for pressure and stress. Meditation can help create self-awareness because it is all about becoming more peaceful, focused, and mindful.
There is not a wrong or right way of meditation, but there are different types that do exist. Similar to how your reasons for incorporating this practice in your routine will vary, your choice of technique can also vary. Not all meditation techniques can be right for you because they need different mindsets and skills. Keep reading to find out more about the different techniques of meditation to allow you to choose one:
This meditation technique is immensely popular in the West and has its origins in the teachings of Buddha. The purpose of this technique is to help people understand the workings of their minds. Once you acquire this self-knowledge, it can help you overcome intolerance, impatience, dissatisfaction, and a number of other habits that keep you from living happier and fuller lives. To practice this technique, you have to acknowledge your reality, which means you have to be mindful of your thoughts and body.
It would be best if you stopped judging your thoughts or even manipulating them. Your focus should be on your breathing while you learn to live in the moment and appreciate what you have. Mindfulness is a combination of awareness and concentration, and this requires focusing on your breath. It can help in reducing stress, depression, and anxiety. Plus, it can also help you cope with tough situations, fostering resilience and ensuring peace of mind.
This particular technique of meditation is the polar opposite of multi-tasking because it requires you to focus on what you are doing solely. When you are trying to focus on several things at once and jumping from one thing to the other, it can result in dissatisfaction and a divided mind. You need to choose an object of meditation and focus all of your attention on it. Use any one of your senses to do so, such as counting the number of breaths, counting beads, or even sitting and gazing at a candle flame, or staring at the moon. Do not let your mind go astray; if you get distracted, you just need to refocus. This technique is best for you if you are looking to sharpen your attention and improve your focus.
Almost all spiritual traditions and religions comprise of some sort of meditation. It is not just Buddhism, Hinduism, and Taoism, but even Judeo-Christian traditions that include meditation. Practicing meditation in a spiritual context can help in promoting a stronger connection with a higher power. In some non-theistic traditions like Buddhism, it is more about self-actualization and achieving self-awareness. If you are looking for spiritual growth, you can give spiritual meditation a try. It could involve chanting a prayer or even a mantra. You can engage in this technique at home or even in a place of worship.
This is a kind of spiritual meditation that requires you to remain seated and breathe slowly. The goal is to be able to transcend above your current state. You have to focus on a repeated word or a mantra, which is determined through a number of factors. It may be assigned to you, or you can also select your own mantra. The purpose is to help you settle into a profound state of rest and relaxation inwards, helping you achieve inner peace without any such effort or concentration.
Sometimes called Metta meditation, this technique is rather self-explanatory. The purpose is to help people in developing kindness and love for everything, even towards something that causes you to stress or is not in your favor. It requires practitioners to breathe deeply and keep their minds open to receiving kindness and love. Then, they send the same towards their loved ones and even people in general. This kind of meditation requires you to repeat the message a few times until you develop the right attitude.
This meditation technique can encourage feelings of love and compassion amongst practitioners, not just for others but for themselves as well. If you are dealing with anger, resentment, or even frustration of any kind, this meditation technique can do wonders for you. Loving-kindness meditation promotes positive feelings and can reduce any stress, anxiety, and depression.
The word Chakra comes from the Sanskrit language and is translated to ‘wheel’. Chakras are used to refer to the human body’s centers of energy or spiritual power, and this meditation technique focuses on keeping them fluid and open. The body supposedly has seven chakras, each of which can be found in a different part of the body, and their blockage can lead to mental and physical problems.
This is where Chakra meditation comes in because it uses a relaxation technique that can bring harmony and balance. You may have to visualize every Chakra in the body, along with its specific color. Every Chakra has its own color, and you can also use crystals of the respective colors or light incense.
Along with these meditation techniques, you will find plenty more like Zen meditation, Chanting meditation, Guided meditation, and Vipassana Meditation. All of these disciplines require focusing on increasing acceptance without judgment, slower breathing, and improving awareness. You can get results with your chosen technique, depending on how focused you are and how diligently you practice it.