Meditation: An Introduction To History of Meditation & Types of Meditation
Meditation is simply making a choice to focus your mind on something and opening to each moment of life with calm awareness. Mediation is inspired by a variety of spiritual traditions, both Eastern and Western, helping people to experience the sacred.
Meditation is a very powerful tool for healing body, mind, and spirit through reducing tension, anxiety and stress; lowering blood pressure and cholesterol; creating stronger focus and concentration; and increasing self-understanding and self-acceptance. ?Meditate? comes from the Latin word meditari, which means ?to engage in contemplation or reflection.? It also means ?to focus one?s thoughts? on something, or ?to reflect on or ponder? over something Meditation helps one create a serenity filled experience, melting away day to day stress and worries.
Meditation is both an ancient spiritual practice and a contemporary mind-body technique for relaxing the body and calming the mind. Although meditation has a short recorded history, its roots travel back to ancient times.
Researchers think that primitive hunter societies may have discovered meditation and its altered states of consciousness while staring at the flames of their fires. Over thousands of years, meditation evolved into a structured practice. Indian scriptures ?tantras? mentioned meditation techniques 5000 years ago. Buddha, ?one of history?s major proponents of meditation,? and a major meditation icon, first made his mark around 500 B.C. His teachings were spread far and wide across the Asian continent.
Separate countries or cultures adopted different forms of the word ?meditation,? and they each found their own unique way of practicing it. Buddhist and Hindu based Eastern style meditation practices are still the most popular today.
Meditation was spread to Western society thousands of years after it was adopted in the Eastern society. It finally started to gain popularity in Western society in the mid-20th century. In the 1960s and 1970s, many professors and researchers began testing the effects of meditation and learned about its multitude of benefits.
There are as many types of meditation in the world as there are religious. Mainly, meditation traditions are divided in two types: Eastern and Western. In Eastern meditation traditions there are two types – Hinduism and Buddhism.
In Hinduism, there are many different types of meditation, and Buddhism consists of Zen, Insight, and Tibetan. On the other side, Western traditions have Meditative Prayer, Gnostic Meditation, Jewish Meditation, Christian Meditation, and Islamic Meditation. Christian meditation is made up of The Prayer of Jesus, Walking Mediation, Gregorian Chant, and Canonical Hours.
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