7 types of meditation techniques and their benefits

Meditation under the Angel Oak by alisonleighlilly, on Flickr
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Meditation is among those words that are so overused that few people know the real connotation and implications. A lot of people conceive of mediation as a means of enhancing concentration or a procedure that makes you happy mentally.

As it is, meditation can be described as a state of thoughtless awareness that makes the mind calm and tranquil yet does not affect alertness. In this stage, you can connect with your inner self, keeping aside the worries, thoughts and negativity. In a stress ridden world where finding personal time has become a tedious task, people often resort to meditation to cope with stress and anxiety.

Various types of meditations

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Like people worship the almighty in various forms and methods, it is possible to connect to your inner self through meditative practices that suit your lifestyle and thoughts. Over the years, meditation methods have become diversified and they have been affected by spirituality, philosophy and faith.

Below listed are 7 different types of meditation techniques that are widely practiced worldwide:

1. Mindfulness Meditation

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In this mode of meditation, a practitioner becomes aware of activities and sounds surrounding him or her. You let the mind become fluid and let it flow from one thought to another. You should not let the mind stay fixed on a particular thought when trying this method. If the place you live in is noisy, there is no need to get into a sound proof room, for example.

It helps enhance your capacity to focus on a target or thought amidst distractions and stress.

2. Spiritual Meditation

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This method is ideal for the spiritually inclined men and women who take part in prayers daily. It is a process of connecting with the supreme power residing within your soul. In this mode of meditation, you need to calm your mind and focus on a problem or question.

It helps you find answers to unresolved issues of life.

3. Focused Meditation

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If you find clearing thoughts occupying your mind is tedious, try focused meditation. You can focus on a mantra or object. In this mode, you need to keep the mind focused on a single thought or object consistently. It can be tried with relaxing music.

This meditation method makes your mind rejuvenated.

4. Movement Meditation

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It is quite different from other types of meditations. You need to keep eyes closed and focus on breathing. You also need to try repetitive flowing movements. The attention should be on those movements rather than any object, thought or sound.

It does not require elevated concentration levels and people recovering from addiction can benefit from it as it has been seen.

5. Mantra Meditation

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This mode involves chanting mantras while you try to calm your mind. The sounds actually help you focus on an object or thought. Om mantra or other spiritual mantras are often used in this meditation mode. The mantras can be chanted loudly, but after a time the loudness will not come in the way of connecting with the inner self.

This meditation is effective in calming agitated or worried mind and taking it to the level of sublime consciousness.

6. Heart-centred meditation

Road meditation by Kashirin Nickolai, on Flickr
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This is also called the heart chakra meditation. It should be practiced in a serene place. You need to focus on your heart and inhale and exhale in a slow, fluid manner.

It helps you get rid of sadness and fears. This meditation also awakens a sense of compassion and loving feeling in mind.

7. Reflective meditation

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Also called analytical meditation, this method deploys disciplined thinking. To practice it properly, you need to select a theme or query. Then you have to focus your reflection on it entirely. Initially, it is natural to find your mind wandering off to many directions, but with practice and perseverance you will be able to focus on the chosen thought.

It boosts your mind’s capacity to analyse things neutrally and calmly. This, in turn, helps you resolve various problems of life.

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