Meditation involves concentrating the mind on subject of thought without any distractions [Meditation and concentration].
The methods used in the practice of Buddhism are called Buddhist meditation.
Buddhists identify meditation with mental growth. In meditation, one uses object to concentrate and direct their attention.
The object may be breathing sensations, physical sensations of the body, visual images or sounds.
The core of Buddhist meditation is practicing eight fold noble path.
The eight fold noble path are right thought, right view, right speech, right effort, right concentration, right livelihood, right action and right mindfulness.
Three types of Buddhist meditation are mostly used in United States.
Three types of Buddhist meditation:
- Insight meditation: This is also referred as mindfulness or vipassana. This meditation comes from Thailand and Burma. This method involves observing body sensations and thoughts which come and go. If your attention drifts, you return to the observation. Observing and watching yourself can lead to deep insights about your real identity.
- Zen meditation: This meditation comes from Japan and Korea. You should perform meditation without thoughts. Second way of performing zen meditation is watching your sensations and thoughts as they come and disappear. Third way of performing zen meditation is teacher asks the student to solve a puzzle.
- Tibetan meditation: It is called vajrayana which came from Tibet. Of all the three types mentioned, Tibetan practice is the one with cultural influences from its native area. It includes wide range of concentration, devotional and insight practices.
Buddhist meditation teachings:
- In Buddhist meditation, attentiveness to the movements of the body is to be cultivated. It teaches the meditation and mindfulness.
- After practicing this meditation, it should not leave selfishness and egoism.
- One should attain detachment on the objects for clear thinking.
- Focusing your mind and keeping it steadily on a single point which is nothing but concentration.
Benefits of Buddhist meditation:
- In busy lives, thoughts will disturb the mind and there will be no peace. Through meditation, you can avoid unnecessary thoughts and can keep your mind clear. You can attain comfortable and peace of mind with free of thoughts.
- With meditation, your concentration improves. Concentrating the mind on a single point improves your attentiveness, alertness and memory. You can attain wisdom with concentration.
- If your mind is peaceful, you will be happy. Practicing meditation has many benefits. The blood pressure can be normalized, stress can be reduced [Stress management techniques], heart problems can be reduced and you feel relaxed. If your health problems are solved, you will be free of problems and can lead a happy and healthy life.
- Buddhist meditation has many psychological and medical benefits. it boosts the immune system, slows down the aging process [Anti aging medicine], promotes sense of well being, and develops cortical matter in the brain.
Buddhist meditation is widely accepted to achieve goals such as spiritual blissfulness and physical relaxation. It functions as a therapy for reducing pain and stress. Buddhist meditation brings self fulfillment. It must be practiced according to one’s conviction and faith.