Not to be confused with mediation or medication.Contact us
Meditation is a practice where an individual uses a technique – such as mindfulness, or focusing the mind on a particular object, thought, or activity – to train attention and awareness, and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state.
Scholars have found meditation elusive to define, as practices vary both between traditions and within them.
Meditation is practiced in numerous religious traditions. The earliest records of meditation (dhyana) are found in the ancient Hindu texts known as the Vedas, and meditation plays a salient role in the contemplative repertoire of Hinduism and Buddhism. Since the 19th century, Asian meditative techniques have spread to other cultures where they have also found application in non-spiritual contexts, such as business and health.
Meditation may significantly reduce stress, anxiety, depression, and pain, and enhance peace, perception, self-concept, and well-being. Research is ongoing to better understand the effects of meditation on health (psychological, neurological, and cardiovascular) and other areas.
The Transcendental Meditation technique recommends practice of 20 minutes twice per day. Some techniques suggest less timeб especially when starting meditation, and Richard Davidson has quoted research saying benefits can be achieved with a practice of only 8 minutes per day. Research shows improvement in meditation time with simple oral and video training. Some meditators practice for much longer, particularly when on a course or retreat. Some meditators find practice best in the hours before dawn.
Asanas and positions such as the full-lotus, half-lotus, Burmese, Seiza, and kneeling positions are popular in Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism, although other postures such as sitting, supine (lying), and standing are also used. Meditation is also sometimes done while walking, known as kinhin, while doing a simple task mindfully, known as samu or while lying down known as savasana.
The history of meditation is intimately bound up with the religious context within which it was practiced
The Islamic practice of Dhikr had involved the repetition of the 99 Names of God since the 8th or 9th century.
Meditation has spread in the West since the late 19th century, accompanying increased travel and communication among cultures worldwide.