Meditation Articles Series
Meditation for Beginners
Meditation is the experience of the mind without constant chatter. The human mind is often referred to as a "monkey mind" (apologies to monkeys), in that it is very difficult for it to stay focused on any one thing before it jumps to something else. Meditation encourages our focus and concentration. This is difficult for the mind as it does not want to stay concentrated at all.
Purpose of meditation
Therefore the purpose of meditation is to still the mind so that its true nature is revealed to us. That nature is naturally calm, peaceful and serene. It is unclouded by tension, stress, and anxiety. Our approach then to meditation is one of patience and tolerance as we accept the state of our minds at any given moment without condemnation or judgment. Meditation then becomes a soothing balm to our thoughts and emotions. Thoughts will rise, emotions will be there in the meditation practice from time to time, but as we stay focused these thoughts and emotions will have less power over us. We can begin to observe them without being caught in the dramas that keep us in misery, and unhappiness. We begin to experience tranquillity of mind, and suppleness of body. Meditation is the rediscovery of our essential nature. It is the emergence of who we are - that is, love itself. In meditation, we rediscover our Heart Connectedness to everyone and everything. We are not separate. Our journey as we meditate enables us to become alert and effective in the world, compassionate and sensitive to others and the natural world. We develop an understanding of unity, enhanced feelings of self-awareness and self-acceptance. We reach the highest level of thought - that is positive thought manifested in peace, harmony, creativity, love and happiness.
There are many different techniques that are available for you to practise. The ones included on this site are all suitable if you are new to meditation. They can also be practised by anyone who is already an experienced meditator. Always remember that whatever technique you choose, it requires your attention. When you are attentive, you are focused. When random thoughts are not distracting you, you have entered into meditation.
Over time a person can meditate just about anywhere, but if you are a beginner, choose a regular place that is quiet and where you can be alone. This can be a corner of a room where you create a space that can remain undisturbed. You can enhance the atmosphere with some flowers or a lighted candle. You can sit on a chair or cross-legged on the floor on a cushion. Keep your back and neck straight. If you lie down at this stage there may be a tendency to fall asleep. Wear loose comfortable clothing, making sure there is no tightness at the chest, waist, and hips. Turn off phones or any other distracting appliances. Begin a daily practice of ten or more minutes, and increase that to thirty minutes a day. Early morning is a preferred time to meditate, but evening is also okay. Whatever time you decide make it regular, and consistent.
Ready to begin meditating? Start here with our Learn How to Meditate in 5 days course.
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Common Questions about Meditation