Different Types Of Meditation

We often come across this question – which is the most effective type of meditation? And, why not when there exist uncountable types of meditation. While the question is complex, the answer is simple. There is no one size that fits all. The best meditation for you will be the one in which you are completely relaxed and comfortable. The one that gives you the results you crave for, coaxing you to come back to it every day. In simpler words, whatever works for you is the right one.

Through this article, we would be looking at four of our favorite types.

4 Types of Meditation You Should Know

1. Light Meditation

It is one of the most popular types of visualization meditation. The practice is followed quite often by people on a spiritual ascension. Various colors of light are used according to the situation. While blue light is associated with protection and Archangel Michael, the green symbolizes healing. A golden white light is considered to be purifying and protecting while purple is known for its transmuting properties.

  • Sit down with your back straight, allowing the spine to lengthen. Close your eyes and allow your body and mind to relax.
  • Make sure that you remain undisturbed during your meditation time.
  • Focus on your heart. Visualize a beautiful glowing light in the center of your heart. Accept and acknowledge the Divine presence within you.
  • Allow the mind to play its games, but just observe and let go. Do not be bothered by your past or future. Just stick to that inner glow.
  • Now visualize that a circular white light shining about three feet away from your head.
  • Imagine a stream of light flowing into your body through your crown. Feel it swishing through each and every part of your brain, cleansing and energizing every cell, tissue, and nerve.
  • Once you are ready, allow the white light to flow into your face. Repeat a similar action.
  • In the same manner, allow light to flow into each and every cell of your body, cleansing, purifying, and energizing the cells.
  • Finally, when it reaches the end of your feet, imagine roots growing from the soles of your feet. Allow these roots to penetrate into the Earth and connect with the soul of Mother Earth.
  • Allow this energy to remain in your for a few moments.
  • Rub your palm to generate warmth. Place them on your eyes.
  • Blink your eyes, open them, and look at your palms.

You could choose any color of light depending on your intention.

2. Mantra Meditation

Mantras are a certain word, phrases, or fragmented sentences that are repeated loud or chanted in the mind. These Mantras or sounds become the focal points in Mantra meditation. These words that were used since the Vedic period to control the minds or for influencing.

If I have to quote John Main, the very famous Benedictine Monk, “The mantra, taking us into the present moment and beyond the ego, slips through the narrow gate into the city of God.”

Since Mantras are sounds and every sound in this Universe has a certain vibration frequency, repetition of these mantras will prevent the mind from wandering. When your vibration starts syncing with that of the mantra, the momentum of mantra elevates. And, you will find that the mantra doing its actual job.

One of the most popular mantras is “Om Shanti Shanti Shanti Om!” When translated into English, it literally means let there be peace.

A Sample Mantra Meditation

  • Clear your mind. Center yourself. Take 15 deep breaths. Clear your mind by focusing on your breath. Allow your mind to wander. Convince it to come back.
  • Once you are ready, choose your mantra. Set your intention. Remind yourself why you are using your mantra. Be clear to yourself.
  • Chant your mantra loud or mentally repeat it. If possible, coordinate your chant and breath.
  • Once the Mantra fills in your senses, focus on the space in between your eyebrows or heart, depending on your intention. If you are using the Mantra for healing a certain issue, bring your awareness to that issue/body part that needs healing.
  • Choose to continue the chanting and immerse yourself in the meditation.
  • When you are ready to come out, stop the chanting and allow this vibration to remain in your for a few moments.
  • Rub your palm to generate warmth. Place them on your eyes.
  • Blink your eyes, open them, and look at your palms.

3. Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness meditation hails from the Buddhist meditation, Vipassana. As mentioned in the previous article, mindfulness and meditation share a very close-knit, intricate relationship. Mastering mindfulness is essential to overcome suffering, understand natural wisdom, and live in this moment peacefully, happily, and calmly. In simple words, you allow your mind to wander, but you do not judge its activities, whatsoever happens.

Simple Mindfulness Meditation

  • Sit down in a comfortable seated posture, keeping your back straight.
  • Take 15 deep breaths to prepare your body and mind for the practice.
  • When you are ready, bring your focus to the way you breathe. Feel the air moving in and out of your nostrils. With each inhalation, consciously relax your body and mind. With each exhalation, let go of any stress and tension you have stored in your body.
  • Just observe the thoughts, emotions, and feelings arising within you.
  • Do not judge them. Do not criticize them. Just allow them to come and go as they are.
  • If your mind wanders, return its focus to breathing.
  • When you are ready to come out, restore your awareness by listening to the sounds that surround you!
  • Rub your palms and place them on your eyes.
  • Blink your eyes, open them, and look at your palms.

4. Gazing Meditation (Trataka)

There is a saying that goes something like this. “The eyes are the windows of the soul”. Fixing your gaze is known to still the monkey mind in a powerful way. And, since we are fixing our gaze at a solid object present in front of us, the feedback we receive is quick.

Trataka is a form of gazing meditation that is quite often practiced to improve vision and enhance concentration. However, it serves as a wonderful learning technique for those who are new to meditation.

How to practice Trataka?

  • Sit in a comfortable seated posture, keeping your spine upright.
  • Place a candle on a podium in such a way that it is exactly placed on your line of sight.
  • Take 15 slow, deep breaths to relax your body and mind.
  • Focus your eyes on the candle flame. Gaze at the flame continuously till your eyes tire.
  • Close your eyes and visualize the same flame now.
  • Practice this for a few minutes before coming out of the meditation.

Once you are comfortable with gazing at the candle flame, you can start practicing Shunya gazing or gazing the void. Try to incorporate breath awareness throughout to deepen your meditation.

These were just four types of meditation…There are much more…

  • Zen
  • Yoga Nidra
  • Transcendental
  • Kundalini
  • Qi Gong

to name a few…

As I said earlier, there is no hard and fast rule that you should follow a specific meditation. Have the courage to experiment with different types of meditation and stick to the one that suits you the best!

Let peace and happiness fill you! Best wishes!

Image Source: Wikipedia

Nishanth - Track Yoga

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