Meditation is a centuries-old practice that is currently used in civilisations all over the globe to achieve inner calm and harmony. Although meditation is linked to many different religious traditions, it is more about altering consciousness, discovering awareness, and reaching serenity than faith. It is growing more popular since there is a greater need to relieve stress in our hectic schedules and demanding lifestyles. While there is no right or wrong method to meditate, it is essential to choose a practice that suits your requirements and compliments your personality.
Nine forms of meditation are frequently practised:
- Mindfulness meditation
- Spiritual meditation
- Focused meditation
- Movement meditation
- Mantra meditation
- Transcendental meditation
- Progressive relaxation
- Loving-kindness meditation
- Visualisation meditation
Not every style is suitable for everyone. These disciplines need distinct abilities and mindsets. How can you tell which practice is best for you? It’s what seems natural to you and what you’re encouraged to do. Continue reading to find out more about the many forms of meditation and how to get started.
1. Mindfulness Meditation
Mindfulness meditation is the most common practice in the West, and it derives from Buddhist teachings. You pay attention to your ideas as they travel through your mind during this exercise. You do not pass judgement on the pictures or become interested in them. You merely observe and note any patterns that emerge. This technique combines focus and awareness. While watching any body sensations, thoughts, or feelings, you may find it beneficial to focus on an item or your breath. This form of exercise is ideal for individuals who do not have a teacher to assist them since it may be done alone.
2. Spiritual Meditation
Spiritual meditation is practised in Eastern faiths such as Hinduism and Daoism, as well as in Christianity.
It is similar to prayer in that you contemplate the stillness around you and seek a greater connection with your God or the Universe.
Essential oils are frequently used to enhance spiritual experiences. It can be practised at home or in a religious setting. This exercise is good for people who thrive in quiet and want to improve spiritually.
3. Focused Meditation
Concentration utilising any of the five senses is required for this exercise. You can, for example, focus on something internal, such as your breath, or bring in external stimuli to assist you to focus your attention.
Counting mala beads, listening to a gong, or looking at a candle flame are all good ways to relax. Although this exercise appears straightforward in principle, it might be difficult for novices to maintain their attention for more than a few minutes at first. If your attention wanders, it’s critical to return to the practice and refocus. As the name implies, this technique is excellent for anyone who needs to focus more on their life.
4. Movement Meditation
Although most people associate movement meditation with yoga, it may also involve strolling through the woods, gardening, qigong, and other mild kinds of motion. It is an active kind of exercise in which you are guided by your movements. People who find serenity in action and like to let their minds wander would benefit from this.
5. Mantra Meditation
Many systems, including Hindu and Buddhist traditions, emphasise mantra meditation. A repeating sound is used in this kind of exercise to cleanse the mind. It might be a word, phrase, or sound, such as the well-known “Om.”
It makes no difference whether you say your mantra loudly or quietly. After reciting the mantra, you will be more attentive and in tune with your surroundings. This helps you to reach higher states of consciousness.
Some people prefer it because it is simpler for them to focus on a word than their breath. This is also an excellent technique for those who dislike stillness and prefer repetition.
6. Transcendental Meditation
It is a well-known kind of exercise. Numerous research in the scientific community has been conducted on this technique.
It is more adaptable than mantra meditation since it employs a mantra or set of syllables unique to each practitioner. This practice is intended for people who enjoy structure and are committed to continuing the practice.
7. Progressive Relaxation
Progressive relaxation, also known as body scan exercise, is a practice that aims to reduce tension in the body and promote relaxation. This type of exercise frequently entails progressively tightening and relaxing one muscle group at a time throughout the body. It may also inspire you to envision a calm wave flowing through your body to assist relieve stress in some situations. This type of exercise is frequently used to reduce tension and unwind before going to bed.
8. Loving-kindness Meditation
It is used to cultivate sentiments of compassion, kindness, and acceptance for oneself and others. It usually entails opening one’s heart to receive love from others and then sending out a sequence of good wishes to loved ones, friends, acquaintances, and all living beings. Because this form of exercise is meant to cultivate compassion and love, it may be beneficial to individuals who are angry or resentful.
9. Visualization Meditation
It is a method that focuses on increasing emotions of relaxation, serenity, and tranquillity via the visualisation of good scenes or pictures. It is critical to visualise the scenario clearly and utilise all five senses to add as much information as possible throughout this practice. Another type of vision meditation involves visualising oneself achieving specific goals to enhance attention and drive. Many individuals use visualisation to improve their mood, decrease stress, and develop inner calm.
How to get started?
The simplest way to begin is to sit quietly and concentrate on your breathing. Unless you’re too busy, you should meditate for 20 minutes every day. After that, you should sit for an hour. All jokes aside, it’s better to start small, even 5 or 10 minutes at a time, and work your way up from there. Sit for 20 minutes every day for 100 days in a row. After that, add a further 2 to 5 minutes of exercise throughout the day to break up the craziness, and you’ll quickly notice the difference.
Why meditation is beneficial?
There is a lot of data to back up its various advantages.
It can benefit in the following ways:
- reduce blood pressure
- dependable source
- lessen anxiety
- dependable source
- lessen pain
- dependable source
- alleviate depressive symptoms
- enhance sleep
- dependable source
Whether the benefits are anecdotal or scientifically established, individuals who practise regular meditation are sure of their life benefits.
The Bottom Line
There is a meditation practice for everyone, whether you want to relieve stress or discover spiritual enlightenment, find quiet or flow-through movement.
Don’t be scared to venture outside of your comfort zone and experiment with various sorts. Often, a little trial and error are required before you discover the one that fits. It isn’t supposed to be forced. When we push it, it becomes a chore. Gentle, consistent practice becomes sustaining, helpful, and pleasurable with time. Allow oneself to be open to new possibilities. There are so many distinct types of exercise that if one isn’t working or feels uncomfortable, try another.”