“Know meditation, know life. No meditation, no life.” – Osho
Here’s something that might shock you. If you don’t have some kind of regular mindfulness practice, you’re not fully experiencing life.
What I mean by this is that when you’re mind-full, instead of mindful, you’re lost in thought – fixated on the past or future – and missing out on the present moment.
The present moment is all that’s really real. The past and future only exist as projections from our minds.
Think about some of the best experiences of your life. You were completely present, right? If you’re watching a sunset, you’re not thinking about what you have to do next week. If you’re making love, you’re not thinking about what that kid said to you in middle school (I’d hope not). These moments are so amazing because you’re completely present, fully immersed in the beauty of the moment.
Now what if I told you that you could live like this on a daily basis?
It’s entirely possible. I know because I do it, for the most part. Of course, I get carried away by thoughts sometimes and refer to the past or future when need be. But my “home” is in the present moment.
The best way to do this is through meditation.
And there are countless types of meditation…
7 Types of Meditation
1. Focused Attention
1. Focused Attention
Focused attention (FA) meditation involves focusing on something intently as a way of staying in the present moment and transcending your internal dialogue.
The prototypical example of this is gazing at a candle in a dark room. I’ve personally done this with pieces of art and it’s quite the experience.
You can focus on anything too: visual pieces, artwork, sounds, tastes, smells. Bringing attention to your own breathing can even be a focused attention meditation. The possibilities are endless.
Focused attention is a great way to cultivate mindfulness and practice being fully in the present moment. It bridges the gap between ordinary consciousness and a traditional meditative state.
2. Mantra Meditation
A mantra meditation consists of repeating a mantra over and over again. As an example, one of the most common mantras to repeat is “Om.”
Like focused attention meditation, mantra meditation gives your monkey mind something to focus on, which helps bring you deeper into meditation. I’ve had experiences where I’ve “come back into my mind” to find my mind still repeating a mantra. So that’s a testament to how effective it can be.
3. Transcendental Meditation
Transcendental Meditation (TM) involves the use of a sound or mantra, and is typically practiced for 15–20 minutes twice per day. So it’s a specific type of mantra meditation.
It’s taught in person by a licensed TM practitioner. Everyone receives their own personalized mantra when learning TM.
4. Moving Meditation
A moving meditation is any kind of movement done in a conscious, mindful way.
Many activities can be a moving meditation; walking, yoga, qigong, workouts…etc. Even simple tasks like washing dishes can be a moving meditation if practiced mindfully. The key is being completely present and letting go of extraneous thoughts.
Someone who is an advanced meditator practices meditation through everything they do. In this way, life becomes a moving meditation.
Visualization meditation consists of building an image or feeling in your consciousness. This could include chakra meditations, healing meditations, goal visualization…etc.
There are so many possibilities with visualization. The practice with visualization is cultivating the ability to fully focus your consciousness on the visualization, while letting go of any extraneous thoughts or distractions that come up.
6. Guided Meditation
Guided meditations are self-explanatory. It’s when another person guides you through a meditation.
Guided meditations come in wide variety of forms and can be “guided versions” of any of the categories listed above too.
Because someone else guides the way, guided meditations are a great way for people to dip their toes in meditation.
7. Mindfulness Meditation
This is the purest form of meditation. I don’t mean pure in terms of better. It’s just the simplest.
Mindfulness meditation can be thought of as the most basic form of meditation. All it consists of is simply sitting (or lying down) with your eyes closed and observing your thoughts. That’s it!
It’s really that simple. Just being aware of your thoughts is transformative in and of itself. Then you gradually drift into the space between thoughts, which is where the real magic happens.
Due to its elegant simplicity, I recommend everyone use mindfulness meditation as their core meditation practice. It’s the foundation of all of the other types of meditation as well as everything else in life (literally).
Now you might be asking,“Where do I start?”
The best way to start a meditation practice is by joining in on the 7 Day Meditation Challenge.
Find peace within and learn to revel in the chaos of reality.
– Stevie P!
Click the image below to join the 7 Day Meditation Challenge.