Meditation and the Religions of the World

Meditation and the Religions of the World

Meditation and the Religions of the World

Secular and spiritual meditations have fundamental differences and they are completely different in many ways. Spiritual growth and the attainment of an elevated state are the typical end result of spiritual meditation. In the meantime, secular meditation is focused more on gaining relaxation, achieving self-improvement and promoting stress reduction. The latter is commonly practice because the objective of doing so can easily be attained. Nevertheless, secular meditation is founded on spiritual meditation, which emerged in the development of the different religions practiced in the world today.

To better understand the origins of meditation and how it works to transform a person’s mental, spiritual, and physical state, here is an overview of the meditative practices of some of the world’s major religions. Majority of them dates back to centuries.

Zen Buddhism

One of the most popular Buddhist schools in the world today is Zen Buddhism. The religion came to Japan from China. The teachings of the Buddha spread beyond the borders of India to countries in mainland Asia, traveling eastward and westward with traders taking the Silk Route. In Japan, the form of Buddhism that is now widely practiced amongst the populace started developing in the 8th century. Dosho, a Japanese monk established the practices of Japanese Buddhism after returning from China and learning about the religion. Dosho established the very first meditative hall in the Nara Prefecture and from that time onward, meditation has been established as an important element of Zen Buddhism.

 Meditation in Christianity

Among Christians and Roman Catholics, meditation is more commonly associated with monks and nuns who have sworn to a vow of silence while meditating on the Word of God. This idea of engaging in meditation may be difficult to understand, especially amongst Christians who relate meditation to Eastern mysticism. Nevertheless, monastic life is not the only area where meditation plays a role in Christianity. The Bible is believed to have passages describing meditation, particularly in the Old Testament. John Main, a Benedictine monk who believed that repetitive prayer is a form of meditation, promoted the important role of meditation in Christian life. Some scholars point out that praying the Holy Rosary is a form of meditation as well.

Meditative practice in other world religions

In Islam, a traditional form of contemplative meditation is mentioned in the Qur’an, which emphasizes on reflecting about the nature of the Universe. This form of meditation is known to Muslims as “Tafakkur.” Sufism is the other form of meditation in the Islamic traditions and this is more mystical in nature. Although it is much more complex in nature, millions of people practice this kind of meditation. It is a sect of Islam that focuses on true spiritual cultivation. Moslems consider meditation as a method for spiritual cultivation. This practice is also believed to facilitate relaxation of the mind and body in order to facilitate the search for divine wisdom and guidance.

Meditation is widely practiced in modern Judaism as well. Kabbalah is a system of mysticism that involves meditative practices. Generally, meditation is either instituted in formal services or applied more informally while engaged in unstructured praying activities, particularly those that are executed in solitude. There are some who combined it with worship. Nevertheless, the practice of meditation takes many forms in the Jewish religion.

Aside from the two situations mentioned above, traditional Jewish practices such as intuitive methods, visualization, analyses of philosophical and mystical concepts, and in the combinations of Divine names. It is important to note that major religions of the world have meditation as part of their beliefs. They considered the practice as a way to be one with their God.

Meditation and its Origins in the Religious Traditions

Meditation and its Origins in the Religious Traditions

Meditation and its Origins in the Religious Traditions

The monks of the Benedictine order developed the formal steps to meditation in the 12th century. These served as the basis for most modern meditation techniques. In fact almost all techniques practiced today have an influence of this religious order. The monks espoused the following: “read, ponder, pray, contemplate” and the meditative practices in the different religions being observed today share these essential elements.

Origins of meditation in the East

Nevertheless, the very first successful attempts at formalizing meditation occurred centuries ahead of the Benedictine monks. They are not the ones who first practice this activity. Even before Western cultures and religions promulgated meditative practice as essential to the observance of their Faith, the rich and ancient religions of the East were already using meditation as a means of achieving altered states of being. One of the most successful pioneers in formalizing meditative practice was Gautama Buddha. He was a well-known person who practiced meditation. The importance of meditation in the Buddha’s attainment of Enlightenment can be seen in all the statues of the Enlightened One adorning Buddhist temples and homes. Buddhism revolves around this religious practice. The lotus position is a meditative pose and the Buddha is usually depicted in this attitude. If you happen to visit countries that practice Buddhism, their praying position is the lotus position.

 

Spread of meditation in the West

Eastern cultures were already benefiting from the positive effects of meditation for a few thousand years before Western cultures were exposed to it. However, once meditation entered the mainstream, there was no stopping it to spread. The mid-20th century was witness to the evolution of meditation as Western societies modified the basic tenets to suit their needs. Even the younger generations are seeing the benefits of this practice. This led to the diversification of meditative traditions and the huge number of meditation techniques practiced today. In the 1960’s and 1970’s, meditation became the subject of studies that sought to determine the basis for its positive effects on the mind and the body. The practice was dissected and studies in an attempt by Western cultures to understand exactly how it works.

Western cultures took particular interest on Yoga and meditation, expanding the practice with secular versions of what used to be exclusively religious practice, which originated in Hinduism. Until now, Yoga is one of the most widely practiced Eastern traditions that involves meditation. The popularity of Yoga is founded on its widely acknowledged effects on relaxation, stress reduction, and self-improvement.

Benefits of meditation to modern man

Daily stresses can offset the delicate balance of a person’s psychological state, leading to behavioral problems and mental disorders, many of which are undiagnosed and untreated. With so many problems the world has to offer, meditation is needed by a lot of people. Mental health specialists recognize the value of meditation in helping people regain mental balance. Today, meditation is often recommended along with other interventions for anxiety, depression and stress disorders.

Aside from its value in the treatment of mental and behavioral disorders, meditation is also one of the alternative approaches to resolving drug addiction, alcoholism, and other addictive habits such as smoking. Meditation gives the practitioner the chance to think more clearly and make smarter choices in life. Many cultures and religions have contributed to the development and evolution of meditative practices. Until today, it is still continuing to evolve. We have all of them to thank for contributing to the shaping of a practice that helps millions of people today in attaining peace of mind, a positive outlook, and success in life. It has also cured a lot of disease.

 

Leading a Stress Free Life with Daily Meditation

relieve stress

Leading a Stress Free Life with Daily Meditation

Practitioners of Hinduism and Buddhism practiced meditation in order to attain a higher spiritual state. Aside from these two major religions, there are others that incorporate meditation to their teaching. The basic tenets of these religions specify meditative practice as an important component of the daily exercise of faith and devotion to their gods and deities. Meditation is both a means of honoring the traditions of the religion and a way to better oneself, particularly in terms of controlling the impulses and patterns that lead to negative and unproductive habits. It is also something that can be able to control the thoughts of one person. Thus it is being used today as means to cure impending mental issues.

Meditation may mean two different things to two people, depending on where and how they learned to meditate. Meanwhile, the primary purpose of meditation is shared by the many different approaches, and that is attaining a higher level of consciousness. This altered state is a means of transforming and changing the mind such that it becomes calm and focused all the time.

Ways to meditate

Meditation is easier said than done. There are some who devote their time to studying this practice. Still, many of the techniques require very little in terms of materials and resources. For instance, in techniques that is aimed at focusing one’s attention, the only requirement is a quiet place and an object that the person can pay attention to. The latter may even not be necessary if the practitioner chooses to focus instead on a mantra or his own breathing pattern.

There are two other important elements of meditation, and these are universal requirements no matter which technique is to be performed. First of all, the setting must be as quiet as possible, especially for those who are just starting out. A quiet setting does not only refer to the ambient noise, but also to a lack of distractions such as modern gadgets, television, and reading materials. In terms of body position, the familiar lotus position, which requires that person be comfortably seated, is the most popular body posture that is associated with meditation. However, meditation may also be performed while lying down in supine or even when walking. As a person develops skill in entering the meditative state, he or she can meditate while on the move or in noisy and highly stressful environments. Practicing meditation regularly allows a person to “escape” the chaos of traffic, a long line at the grocery store, or an all-day meeting. The key to meditation is for the person to find a level of physical comfort which allows him to direct his mind toward the task at hand.

Meditation and breathing

Breathing plays an important role in meditative practice. In fact, mastering a specific breathing pattern is central to the correct performance of many meditation techniques. The objective of the slow, deep, and diaphragmatic breathing pattern that is taught to meditation novices is to improve breathing efficiency by promoting the use of the diaphragm. The diaphragm is the primary muscle of respiration and using it is the most effective way to breathe, bringing an adequate amount of oxygen to all the cells of the body. This part of meditation is said to heal. Most people are unaware that their breathing pattern is not relaxed and efficient. Instead of the diaphragm, they are mostly using muscles of the shoulders, neck, ribs to breathe, which are accessory muscles of respiration. The process is not that hard to master. There are classes that are being offered that can help in mastering the proper techniques of breathing.

 

Meditation is the Solution to Modern Day Stress Related Problems

reduce stress with meditation

Meditation is the Solution to Modern Day Stress Related Problems

For thousands of years, religious leaders, priests, and monks have used meditation as they search for salvation, revelation, and enlightenment. Now, ordinary people who want to attain inner peace can utilize the same principles and through meditation be better equipped to deal with the everyday stresses they face. There are many benefits of meditation and it includes the removal of stress from the body. This is the reason why a lot of people considering this practice.

The original purpose of meditation, when it was solely practiced for religion related tradition, was to facilitate the attainment of a deeper spiritual state as well as an understanding of the mysteries of faith. Today, meditation is a scientifically proven method of inducing mind and body relaxation, benefiting people of all ages and cultural affiliation.

How regular meditation helps

Meditation is a means of attaining calm and tranquility. There are so many meditation techniques available to people who want to de-stress and relax. Anyone who knows what to do to meditate can perform meditation anytime and anywhere. These days, you can meditate while participating in a meeting, going out for a walk, waiting in line or riding the subway. There are also classes specifically for the purpose of teaching people how to mediate the right way. It involves breathing exercises and proper posture.

One of the ways that meditation benefits practitioners is the way that it produces a deep state of relaxation, which enables the person to focus and attend to one thought or object. With the different techniques of meditative practice available to everyone, it is now possible to eliminate chaotic thoughts and the usual mind clutter that leads to frustration and confusion. The mind is often crowded by nagging worries and negative emotions, which affect a person’s judgment. It also involves problems the world has offer. Meditation succeeds where other approaches fails. Since it has been introduced to the West, meditative practices have benefited millions of people who lead happier lives because they are better equipped to deal with any challenge they encounter.

The anti-stress antidote

When the human body is subjected to either psychological or physical stresses, there are physical changes that occur that negatively impact the body. The fight-or-flight response kicks in. This is the body’s way of preparing the person to “survive” the situation. This physiologic response can be harmful when the stress is applied continuously, like what happens to people who live a stressful lifestyle. It is therefore not surprising that the incidence of heart disease, hypertension, and other diseases due in part to stress is increasing in modern society.

Western medicine is successful in alleviating these conditions and improving quality of life, but only to a certain degree. Moreover, some people are looking for other ways, or alternative approaches to help them deal with stress and make themselves much more capable of dealing with any situation that arises without kicking into high gear all the time.

Scientific studies have shown that meditation has the opposite effect as the fight-or-flight response. Based on research, the following are the physiological effects of meditation: lowered muscle tension, decrease in blood pressure, heart rate, and respiratory rate, as well as lowered oxygen consumption. These effects are proven to be very good for the body.

These are the immediate psychological benefits of practicing meditation regularly. Based on this data, meditation may well be the “de-stressing agent” that people are looking for. Practicing meditation is therefore an effective approach to promoting emotional balance as well as overall good health. Experts today recommend it as a way to deal with stress and to lessen the symptoms of some body ailments.

Origins and Evolution of Meditative Practices

origins of meditation

Origins and Evolution of Meditative Practices

There was a time when meditation was an activity that only monks, gurus, and spiritual leaders engaged in. It is also considered to be a serious activity and a way to commune with the higher being. It was a concept that was as unfamiliar to common folk as the deepest mysteries of their religion. In fact a few decades ago, you will need to study it in a deeper level to achieve the result that is expected from it. Today, things have changed. Meditation is not the exclusive province of spiritualists and the deeply religious. It has already become accessible to everyone who wants to lead a less complicated and more peaceful way of life. Even if you are not monk or spiritual leader, you can practice meditation and attain its benefits.

For thousands of years, meditation was exclusively practiced by Eastern cultures. It is unknown to other part of the world. Eventually, Western cultured imbibed meditative practice mostly due to the spread in popularity of New Age, Yoga, and similar spiritual movements. Meditation was introduced to the mainstream, and it is now both widely practiced in religious and secular circles. Even ordinary people can do it. Most modern practitioners of meditation follow the tradition of a form called “Yogic meditation” which was developed in India more than a century ago. Nevertheless, the word “meditation” connotes a universal practice that the world’s major religions have in common.

Origins in India five millennia ago

In order to understand meditation, it is important to learn of its origins. Archaeological records show evidence of meditative practice on record in Hindu Scripture called “Tantras”. The writings were made in the Indus Valley more than 5,000 years ago. These ancient writings are recognized by scholars as the first document to mention activities that resemble meditation as we know it today.

Another archaeological finding that supports the prehistoric origins of meditation is the discovery made in the 1920s by Sir John Marshall. A carved figure in the attitude of meditation was discovered in Mohenjo-daro, acknowledged by historians as the capital of the civilization that thrived in the Indus Valley around 4,600 years ago. This progressive civilization spanned modern day India and Pakistan.

Because of these archeological discoveries, the general agreement points to the Indus Valley as the place where meditation originated. By far, there are no other archeological or historical evidence found elsewhere which is dated at an earlier date. Scholars also agree that the practice of meditation could have originated earlier than 5,000 years, though there are no existing records to be found.

Modern applications of meditative practice

Since the West has adopted the practice of meditation, its applications have expanded to include uses in the world of medicine, specifically psychotherapy. There are many health benefits that are related to it. From the work of Jacobson on progressive relaxation, various schools of thought have emerged, which incorporates meditation in order to achieve physical and mental relaxation. Today, behavioral approaches and meditation techniques are used together to facilitate the reduction of daily stresses.

Because of the high-paced and often stressful lifestyle that characterizes living in urban centers, more people are being diagnosed with depression, anxiety disorders and other mental health disorders. There are also other problems that can be cured by this practice. Psychotherapists have found success in the treatment of various mental health problems in the use of meditation along with biofeedback, relaxation techniques, hypnosis, and other alternative approaches that does not involve taking prescription drugs. For example, an approach known as multi-modal therapy has been shown to alter behavior. This approach involves the use of meditation.

Origins and Expansion of Meditation

origins of meditation

Origins and Expansion of Meditation

Secular versions of meditation that are now spreading like wildfire around the world are all based on Eastern religious traditions. In fact, these kinds of meditation are becoming popular not just on this side of the world but on other parts as well. Perhaps many people do not realize that the relaxation techniques recommended for people who are dealing with very stressful situations borrow largely from Eastern cultures. The practices are known to cure problems of the modern world.

Origins, development, and expansion of meditative traditions

Historians attribute the origins of meditative practices primarily to India, where an ancient Indus valley civilization that existed 5,000 years ago left cave well figures of men in meditative postures. It was also in India where the founder of Buddhism, Siddhartha Gautama pioneered the formal integration of meditation into religious practice. From there, meditation spread throughout Asia where it was adopted by different cultures. Every culture has its own interpretation of meditation. There are some cultures that add their own approaches to this practice. This led to the expansion of meditative practices to encompass hundreds of different approaches, which eventually trickled to the West.

 

Modern meditative practices have already been influenced by other Eastern cultures, which added their own beliefs in principles to the basic tenets set down in early Buddhist traditions. Practitioners of meditation in China and Japan have formulated their own meditative traditions in the effort to reconcile the practice with their culture and beliefs. From a purely religious practice, meditation has since evolved and expanded to include secular forms and medical applications.

 

Western cultures initially viewed meditation as a purely religious practice and likened it to a certain type of catatonic state. The dissociative stance was not considered as an “appropriate” intervention for use in the healthcare setting. Gradually, meditation was accepted as a beneficial practice after studies and tests were made. In the 1970’s, the very first studies on “mind-body intervention” were published in the “Journal of Transpersonal Psychology. This was the start of the wide acceptance of meditation as a legitimate intervention tool in psychology, particularly in the treatment and prevention of mental health disorders. Today, the world of medicine considers meditation as an effective method in calming the mind and promoting relaxation.

Common characteristics of meditative practices

The use of meditation in religion involves attaining a heightened level of spirituality and understanding, which are not part of the objective of secular meditation. Nevertheless, there are elements that tie them together. All meditative practices have similar elements in common, three of which are a quiet setting, a single-minded focus and a passive attitude. The approaches vary, but the end goal is quite similar—attainment of peace, stillness, and clarity of mind.

Different approaches to meditation

The variety of meditation techniques being practiced today is quite staggering but it is evolving and adjusting to the modern world. There are meditation techniques for stress relief that aims to put to the fore alpha brain wave activity in order to promote a more relaxed attitude. It is being used as a therapy to cure health problems. Meanwhile, some approaches to meditation are more reflective in nature. For instance, Christian meditation is focused specifically on prayer and reflection on the Word of God. This approach is not primarily geared toward relaxation, but more on sensing the presence of God and communing with Him. This type of meditation is also promoted for stress relief and relaxation, however there’s more to the practice in that answers and solutions to problems are being actively sought as well. There is no doubt meditation has gone a long way since its inception thousands of years ago.

Origins and Uses of Meditative Practice

origin of meditation

Origins and Uses of Meditative Practice

For more than five thousand years, based on documented archaeological discoveries of the 20th century, meditation has been ushering the learned and the religious along the path to salvation. It is being used to be closer to the higher power. Meditative practice is not only a means to achieving salvation and enlightenment but it also serve other purpose related to health. Modern practitioners are more familiar with the uses of meditation in relieving body pain, stress, mental anxiety, and promoting a calm and quiet state of mind. In fact there are many conditions of the body that can be cured by this activity. The interest in meditation is rapidly growing because of its numerous benefits to a person’s mental and physical well-being. In fact, there are some government that promotes this to their community.

 The purpose of meditation

Meditation is a practice that entails turning one’s focus inward. It is a process that involves quieting the mind and shutting out the rest of the world. It is like transcending on a different state. Meditation is essentially all about focusing the mind and coaxing it back toward the sound, word, prayer, mantra, or object chosen as point of focus. One of the techniques employed by practitioners of meditation is repeatedly chanting mantras in order to slow down brain activity. This is how an altered state may be achieved. There are studies that were done related to this activity and it showed that the mind really transfer from one state to another.

There are many different meditation techniques, but despite the variety, meditative practice has one main objective. The main purpose of meditation is to achieve a mind that is clear and quiet. This is the desired alternative to the usual clutter and negativity, which characterize human thought. It is a form of relaxation that changes the state of a person.

The meditative state

This trance-like state is a means of promoting body and mind relaxation, and on a deeper level mastery of one’s mental and physical faculties. Nevertheless, the benefits of meditation go beyond achieving a relaxed state or an altered state of consciousness. Studies show that meditation is alters the state of the brain. As such, developing meditation as a habit can help a person change certain behaviors, replacing destructive and cyclical habits with more productive ones.

Prehistoric origins

Meditation brings about an altered state of mind, which can be achieved in many ways. Historians believe that meditation was already practiced even before civilizations were formed. Religious practices were instrumental in institutionalizing meditation. However, the oldest records that mention meditative practices are 5,000 years of age. The experts argue that practicing meditation does not require a cultural context. Thus, meditation could have been performed well before five thousand years ago. Although there is no evidence from before this time, experts are convinced of earlier origins of the practice, emerging from primitive hunter-gatherer societies.

Religious traditions and meditative practice

The practice of meditation is central to religious observance. Prayer is considered as a form of meditation. Meditation in its traditional form may not be widely practiced in Christianity, but certain traditions in Islam, Judaism, Buddhism and Hinduism involve entering the meditative state.

Modern practitioners of secular and spiritual meditation are mainly influenced greatly by two of the most widely practiced religions of the world—Buddhism and Hinduism. The meditative traditions of these two philosophies now have a global reach. One of the first religious leaders to formalize meditative practice is the founder of Buddhism—the Buddha. He established the foundations that would make meditation a structured practice that can be learned.

 

 

The Extraordinary Benefits of Meditation

benefits of meditation

 The Extraordinary Benefits of Meditation

Meditation is not a new concept. In fact many cultures around the world practice some form of meditation. There are many fundamental differences in how it is performed, but the basic concepts behind meditation are shared by the different religions and cultures. The principles that they follow are all founded on spiritual development. The methods vary but there is no denying the fact that universally, meditation is beneficial to human health and well-being. It is also beneficial for the mind and spirit. In this age of computers, social media, and numerous conflicts affecting millions of lives, meditation has become the refuge of people seeking peace of mind and rest from the fast-paced life that they lead. It is also considered a source of strength.

A practice that dates thousands of years

It is important for modern practitioners of meditation to understand how extremely old the practice is. This will help in understanding the whole practice better. Meditation is not only been in existence for hundreds of years, but it spans millennia. There is evidence that even prehistoric cultures engaged in meditation, though they might have called it something else. Wall art from the Indus Valley dating as old as 5,000 BCE depict figures seated in postures suggesting meditation. The eyes of the figures are narrowed although not closed completely, which suggest a state of consciousness that modern practitioners seek to attain. The cave wall figures are seated on the ground with both legs crossed, and both hands resting on the knees, which is the usual posture of a person meditating.

The primary tenets of meditation were developed in the East and because it was deeply ingrained in their culture when it was still in infancy, Eastern philosophies are characterized strongly by a spiritual perspective. From Eastern cultures, the practice trickled into the West. It was not difficult for Western societies to realize that meditation can help them achieve personal goals in life, and so they embraced it.

Mental and physical benefits from meditative practice

There are many positive effects of meditation, including increased alertness, focus, and concentration. These qualities contribute to better memory and reasoning. Meditation can also contribute to deep concentration. Learning ability is also increased, as well as intelligence. Moreover, many people who practice meditation regularly find their creativity welling up. People who meditate have a broader understanding of the world and have the ability to make better decisions. With these changes in a person’s mindset, he or she can be active participants in relationships that are more nurturing—both romantic and platonic. Some universities today offer meditation classes to help their students in their studies.

It is also common for people who meditate to experience immediate physical benefits such as lowering of muscle tension and pain. According to research, there are a lot of symptoms that are reduced because of meditation. When a person experiences less discomfort, irritability and moodiness are reduced as well. A person thinks more clearly, is a better co-worker, friend, and lover, and becomes an even more productive member of society. There are some communities around the world that advocates meditation to their members.

Spiritual benefits from meditative practice

People who lead stressful and hectic lives need to learn how to be still. This state of detachment and non-attachment eventually leads to spiritual awakening. As a consequence, a person attains detachment from thinking and has increased reliance on the faculty of knowing without exercising judgment. Because of the widening of perspective, it is easier to feel compassion for others.

There is no doubt meditation has benefits that can improve people not just mentally but physically as well.

Benefits of Meditation: A Historical Perspective

Benefits of Meditation: A Historical Perspective

Regular practice of meditation has many positive effects on the mind and body. Today, there are many opportunities to practice meditation. It is being offered in fitness centers. There are even establishments that only offer meditation for people. There are countries in Indonesia that are famous for meditation houses. With the help of a facilitator, meditation can be practiced as part of a group. On the other hand, a person who prefers to meditate in the comfort of his own home is welcome to do so. There are some videos that can teach people to meditate. He can do research on the topic and find out which approach suits his needs best and learn it systematically. The option to ask a teacher or expert for help is available as well.

Incorporating meditation into one’s lifestyle is a popular practice nowadays because meditation is proven to change the mind the body for the better.

Universal benefits of meditation

Since the advent of civilization, man has been striving to better himself and searching for ways to attain success in life. Man’s realization that he is capable of thinking and acting for himself led to the never ending search for ways to improve and change for the better. Awareness of one’s thought processes is one of the universal benefits of meditative practice, no matter what technique or approach is used. There are some people who practice this in a hope to achieve mental state of being. Meditation is a recognized method of altering the mental state, resulting in emotional balance and physical health. Therefore, people who devote time to meditate are also better equipped to handle the challenges that modern living throws at them. It is a way to get by the problems that life has to offer.

Meditation is a practice that takes away negative thoughts and emotions in order to reduce stress and anxiety. A person who meditates is better equipped to handle current situations because their thought processes are uncluttered and focused on the moment, instead of wallowing in the future or the past.

The attainment of a calm, focused, and quiet mind is not the only benefit of meditation. There are physical benefits as well. For instance, meditation can effectively lower blood pressure to a baseline value that promotes healthy bodily functions. Perhaps one of the most prominent physical improvements of meditation is on a person’s breathing pattern. The relaxed pace and greater depth of breathing promoted in meditative practice leads to changes in the person’s physiology. The amount of oxygen required is reduced. The body is more relaxed and the balance shifts more towards conservation of energy.

Where did meditation originate?

Meditation is recognized in many cultures and traditions as a means to attain a higher state. Evidently, civilizations that thrived thousands of years ago were already aware that meditation is a practice that brings forth numerous benefits. The prehistoric cultures that emerged in the Indus Valley thousands of years ago left clues for modern archaeologists to find—clues as to how they lived in those times, what they believed in, and the activities that they engaged in. Their ancient Hindu scriptures already described meditation (tantras). These are some of the earliest documents mentioning people practicing meditation.

Even during ancient times, religious tenets and principles of meditative practices were handed down from one generation to the next as they are done today. From the practitioners of Vedic Hinduism to modern followers of Yoga, the best meditative practices are bequeathed by a teacher to his student. It is exciting to learn this practice and apply it on everyday lifestyle.

Guided Meditation: Let Someone Guides You in the Right Path

guided-meditation

Guided Meditation: Let Someone Guides You in the Right Path

Meditation in its truest sense does not only help people in developing tranquility, calmness, and inner peace but also to grow as a true person. However, some people have misconceptions about meditation as being a hippy act or something associated with marijuana smoking. They did not realize that meditation is done so that the mind can think better to improve the condition of life.

Guided meditation is a form of meditation wherein someone guides you throughout the meditation process and helps you to obtain the result of some descriptions. Many people associate meditation with just sitting cross legged on the floor, eyes closed and repeatedly go humming. This is not the result that most people want because the essence is totally absent.

Compared to other things, meditation must be done with a purpose. Take for instance; you are applying for a job out of a purpose. Once hired, you will have a monthly salary that you can use for example; purchasing a car, house, food, or spend on vacations. Probably, you will not work if you don’t have any purpose.

Meditation is precisely the same. A purpose is needed when meditating and it can vary in many ways. Meditation is done to achieve inner peace, bring about concentration, relax, change the state of the mind, improve learning and creativity, build self-esteem and confidence, focus on healing oneself, control external and internal pain, and overcome fears. The reasons for doing meditation are really unlimited.

You don’t have to be afraid during the guided meditation process since someone ensures that you are taking the right path for achieving your objectives. Thus, it is very important that you choose your meditation guide properly. Different practitioners and experts on guided meditation have different strategies. They facilitate people to experience the different meditation paths according to their objectives.

Most meditation experts are teaching deep breathing methods for beginners to orient them in practicing relaxation as well as in maintaining focus. Meditations paths will not certainly work if you failed in the first step. Keep in mind that meditation guides are unique from one another. So, ask the meditation guide for a free meditation lesson before paying for the services.

In a single meditation center, meditation practitioners dramatically differ in their guiding process. Make sure that you choose the one who works best for you. For example, you are challenge to find new thoughts and ideas about meditation. Then you are encouraged to purchase a guided meditation CD. You try to listen to it at home, but after a few minutes, you burst out in a loud laugh. The voice sounds totally unreal because it was altered digitally. This tool for guided meditation will not work for you since you are not serious about it. However, this meditation CD can work for other people.

So, choose from other guided meditation styles. You can get it from the internet or local bookstore. Guided meditation DVDs, CDs, and videos are very much widely available. Again, never rush in buying one for yourself or as a gift. Check out if free samples are available. Meditation programs with good quality are usually open for viewing and testing. This is the same if you wanted to go to meditation centers or health retreats. Finally, guided mediations will be successful if you are patient enough to do regular meditation practice.