“Meditation brings wisdom; lack of meditation leaves ignorance. Know well what leads you forward and what holds you back, and choose the path that leads to wisdom.”

– Anonymous on Buddhist Meditation

 

Sitting for long hours with an empty mind and feeling peaceful within can only be attained through Meditation. Meditation meanings are described in many religious scriptures. Out of all, Buddhist Meditation has gained a lot of attention. Buddhism is widely spread all around the world. However, the concentration of religion is high in South Asian countries. Singapore is slowly becoming the epicenter of the Buddhist community. Meditation in the country has garnered many followers owing to the popularity of Buddhism in Singapore. People have felt the change in their mind and body by adopting Buddhist meditation techniques.

 

Buddhism is a way of life that leads you to the primary goal of nirvana. Buddhist Meditation teaches us the techniques through which we can calm ourselves in the best way possible and clear our mind of all the distractions. Meditation in Buddhism holds a pivotal value. It is considered the path towards nirvana or reaching the epitome of religious experience. Buddhists describe Meditation as ‘bhāvanā’ (meaning: mental development) and ‘dhyāna’ (meaning: training the mind to reach calmness).

Along with South-Asian countries, the world is gradually accepting the virtue of mindfulness meditation. The concentration of the religion is moving from India and reaching to the rest of the world. There has been a research conducted to test whether the technique can cure severe issues like heart ailments, Alzheimer’s, and improve the immune system. The results have been astonishing. The simple procedure of mindfulness meditation has reflected the change in the medical reports of the patients suffering from the above-mentioned diseases. 

Meditation Techniques in Buddhism

Buddhists consider Meditation as the path towards awakening and liberation. The path of awakening is divided into multiple layers of techniques namely: ‘asubha bhavana‘ (meaning: reflection on repulses), ‘pratityasamutpada‘ (meaning: dependent origination), ‘sati‘ (meaning: mindfulness), ‘anussati’ (meaning: recollection), and ‘Brahma-viharas‘ (meaning: compassion and kindness), with ‘anapanasati‘ (meaning: breath meditation), and ‘dhyāna‘ (meaning: luminous mind). 

These meditation techniques lead the mind and soul towards concentration, tranquility, self-awareness, and mindfulness. If you are thinking of adopting Meditation then, the first step to beginners starts with a breath meditation. In this, the attention rests upon the breath, and the mind is trained to seek calm. There are different instructions for breath meditation in Buddhism. Other then breath meditation, other techniques include vipassana meditation-  taught by Gautam Buddha himself; Zazen– a breath meditation technique that is said to be the core of Zen Buddhism; mindfulness meditation, etc.

In this blog, we will be discussing the techniques of Meditation taught in Buddhism. These  are divided into four groups:

  • Concentration
  • Enlightenment
  • Compassion and Kindness
  • Value life 
  •  

Buddhist Meditation for Mastering the art of concentration

Shamatha meditation

The technique of acquiring calm falls under this type of Meditation. In this, one point concentration is aimed to achieve. The simplest method to do so is to count the breath. The counting would keep you hooked and clear the distractions. It is recommended to concentrate on an object while counting. Keeping the statue of Buddha in front and focusing on the structure has helped many. The easiest is to pick one part in the figure to concentrate, or you can go with a complete structure too. The same would help in enhancing concentration and would eradicate all negativity from life.

Meditation while walking

Generally, practitioners recommend sitting meditation. However, for some, sitting for long hours is entirely out of their comfort zone. Thus, after sitting for an hour, a small walk for thirty minutes is suggested. This is not wholly a meditation form, but it is a technique adopted by Buddha to complete the sitting form of Meditation. In this, the Meditation takes place while walking slowly and concentrating on the feet in an enclosed area. The walk should be slow while practicing the same back and forth.

 

Buddhist Meditation to attain enlightenment

Vipassana meditation

This technique is said to be taught by Buddha himself. In this, while meditating, the person needs to concentrate on the sensations arising from different parts of the body. As the technique is taught by Gautam Buddha himself, it holds high importance. Usually, after spending a few moments of practicing Samantha meditation, it is suggested to move ahead with Vipassana meditation. It takes you a step closer to attaining wisdom.

Shikantaza

In this, the practitioner doesn’t suggest concentrating on any object. The mind and body should be in comfortable positions. The person meditating doesn’t need to get detached from the thoughts that have occupied the mind. This type of Meditation requires concentration despite being aware of the thoughts.

 

Buddhist Meditation to ace the feeling of Compassion and Kindness

Metta Meditation

The feeling of compassion and kindness for others is somewhat difficult for many. Learning true kindness and compassion is possible through meditation. The person meditating is suggested to concentrate on the object with which he/she feels most compassionate or attached. The breathing exercise continues while focusing on an object. The same develops a feeling of love and compassion. This is also known as Metta Generation.

Tonglen Meditation

We sense trouble all around us. While many face troubles due to financial crises, others have some personal problems. Healing the people around us with mediation is known as Tonglen Meditation technique. In this, the person feels the pain of its surroundings, and in turn, they give happiness in whatever form people seek. This technique is also known as secret Meditation. The feeling of healing the surroundings and giving them love, in return, teaches a sense of compassion and kindness.

Meditation for understanding the worth of life

Meditation for valuing human life

As per Buddhist teachings, human birth is the rarest of all. We should never waste a moment of it in feeling less fortunate. Every good or bad thing happening with us is for a reason. We should treasure the moments and seek enlightenment. This form of Meditation revolves around the exclusivity of human life.

Feeling depressed, lost, and unloved are emotions that develop after feeling dissatisfied by the things we feel attached. Meditation makes us believe that our mind could control all these emotions. Above all, feeling awakened should be the aim of all human beings. Buddhist meditation techniques are natural and based on self-control. The methods are divided as per our needs, and yet there is also a way in which we can master them all. Acing the meditation techniques would lead us to the path of enlightenment.

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