Another one of my blogs for MentalBlox.com on meditation. Many people ask me where they should start. I always recommend finding out what type of meditation will work from them and the reason is that I don’t believe meditation is well understood at the beginning. So starting with something that works for you, will help you enhance your spiritual practice.
Meditation is key in spiritual growth. We hear it all the time on the internet, in the streets, on TV, etc. But most people avoid it because their image of meditation is of someone sitting still in a dark room quieting their minds. Creating a meditation routine is the first step to start, but finding the right type of meditation that works for you is most important.
In high school, attending a catholic girls-only school, I enjoyed going to mass every day. I now understand it was my meditation routine. It was a guided meditation lead by the priest. It worked for me because it is difficult to quiet my mind on my own. Guided meditation works for me the best, whether is chanting or simply visualizing the words I hear. I’m able to work on different aspects of my life, relax, and quiet my mind. You can design your own guided meditation and recorded and play back to yourself. Guided meditation can help those that are just now getting started in their spiritual path.
I know people who have no problem with quieting their mind. However, their issue is not being able to “quiet” their bodies. They are the ones you see in yoga not holding still the poses, not being able to sit for a long period of times and not because it hurts their bodies but because it’s simply too hard to stay put. These are the people that enjoy always being busy and physical work. These people may benefit from dynamic meditation and Kundalini Yoga, where the body is moving while meditating. It doesn’t work for me, I have to keep my body still to go deeper, but for those that find anxiety in not moving, dynamic meditation would work best.
Choose a mantra and repeat it. For people that practice physical yoga, there might be mantras they know from their yoga class. I choose mantras from my spiritual books and chant them. I also enjoy practicing Bhakti Yoga, which is devotional yoga, a way of chanting mantras in a call-and-response way also known as Kirtan. Attending Kirtan is a way of mantra meditation and even movement meditation if you dance. Mantra mediation and Kirtan work for me because it quiets my mind and calms me. Many yoga studies offer Kirtan in addition to meditation and yoga classes, but if you are unable to find Kirtan in your area, simply play a few Kirtan CDs and sing along. Sirius XM recently launched Krishna Das radio, so if you have Sirius in your car, you can chant while driving!
Meditation comes in different forms. Finding the right type of meditation and creating a daily routine will help you grow in your spiritual path.
Which of these above would you try first? Share with us your thoughts!