Types of Meditation


There are many different types of meditation to choose from, once you discover that you are interested in exploring what meditation is all about. And it is quite easy, in the current era of information overload, to feel overwhelmed by this array of choice. I will try and shed a little bit of light on this.

This is not a comprehensive list. Also, I do not claim to have the key to unlock the door to what works best for you or anyone else. But funnily enough I do believe that you yourself hold that key, whether or not you have experience of meditation. What I said about meditation on the home page also applies here: only you can decide what suits you best, just like you are the only one who can actually 'do' meditation for you. I suggest that when you read the short descriptions on the Meditation for Beginners website you initially try out a few different types of meditation. Also check out the beginner-meditation-exercises, which will help foster the required mental attitude to the practice.

The other thing to do is to take a mental note of any type of meditation that resonates with you. What I mean by this is, in my experience, there are certain approaches to meditation that immediately click with me, make me feel alright. On the other hand, other approaches to meditation feel just OK but do not seem to 'hit the spot' or connect to me in the same way. This may seem just a superficial feeling, but I would suggest that you go with your gut response. Yes, by all means try them all, but don't feel you have to stick with one just because it is very popular, or that you should avoid another one just because it is unusual.

Even though you will very likely discover your favourite type of meditation, gaining some experience of other types of meditation is very helpful. This is because you may then discover for yourself that in some way there is not all that much difference between them. There are a range of purposes, various traditions and different mental imagery and language associated with the various approaches to meditation (usually conditioned by culture). But isn't there something that they all share?

Whatever meditation you try, isn't one of the key characteristics of all of them that there is a deliberate direction of the attention, focusing it in some way on something, or on nothing. This is followed by a more or less conscious shift in awareness that may lead to a range of 'states of being' such as stillness, calmness, oneness, relaxation, joy, bliss and so forth. I am probably over-simplifying this, but my point is just that at their core, the various types of meditation are the same or very similar.

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