Monday, August 1, 2011

Many forms of Meditation

Defining meditation is an elusive thing. I think it's hard to define because there are so many styles. There is not just one way to meditate. Frank Jude Boccio does a good job giving a brief explanation of a few types of meditation in his article Meditation for Everybody. I love how he explains meditation here:

A good deal of mystique has grown around meditation, yet it is one of the most natural of our human capacities. You've no doubt had moments in your life when you were not thinking or analyzing your experience, but simply "going with the flow." In these moments, there was no past or future, no separation between you and what was happening. That is the essence of meditation.

Contrary to a common misunderstanding, meditation is not a limiting or narrowing of our attention so much as it is a focusing on what is relevant. Our attention can be narrow, as in observing our breath, or broad, as in cooking a five-course dinner. When the mind is able to focus on what is relevant to what is happening now, we experience ourselves as being at one with what we perceive. This experience is deeply joyful, as we become freed from the illusion that we are separate from everything else in the universe. In fact, meditation isn't a withdrawal from life but a deeper, fuller presence in life.

Read his article in Yoga Journal to understand a bit more about a multitude of meditation styles.