Frequently Asked Questions about Meditation
Are there different types of meditation?
Yes, there are different types of meditation for different purposes. These purposes include relaxation and stress reduction, healing and purifying the body/mind, going beyond the mind to experience the calm stillness of our deepest self and more. Hopefully, we can help you find the type of meditation that works best for you.
What is the best type of meditation to practice?
The best meditation technique is the one that is most effective for you personally. We are happy to offer information and classes on different types of meditation or to refer you to others in order to help you find what works best for you. Ultimately, meditation only works if you practice it, so it is very important to find a meditation practice that you feel comfortable with and can most easily integrate into your life.
How will meditation impact my health?
Meditation is a natural process for restoring balance and harmony in the physiology. Through meditation many people have noticed dramatic improvements in their lives and dramatic changes in their health situations. However, meditation should not be looked upon as a cure for any particular health problem and you should not discontinue the advice or medication that you are currently receiving from any health care practitioner.
Is meditation a religion?
No. Although you can find meditation practices in most all religions, meditation itself is not a religion. It is not at all necessary to be part of a particular religion or even to believe in God to experience benefits from meditation. However, you could consider meditation a spiritual practice because it can bring our awareness to our deeper self, sometimes referred to as the level of soul or spirit, and so many people find that meditation enhances their faith. For instance, “Be Still and Know I am God” is a favorite psalm for many Christians and meditation can bring us to that place of stillness.
Is meditation an Eastern technique?
Even though many meditation techniques were first practiced thousands of years ago by sages in the East, this does not make them exclusively Eastern techniques. Meditation is universal and does not belong to the East anymore than anywhere else.
How will meditation affect my relationships?
Meditation can allow us to experience our deeper self. It can help us to rediscover who we really are. It is by knowing who we really are that we can more fully understand other people and our ultimate interconnectedness. It is by accepting and loving ourselves as we are that we learn to accept and love other people as they are. Therefore, meditation can give us the tools by which we can start to enjoy fuller, happier, more harmonious, long-lasting relationships.
Will I need to change my lifestyle in order to meditate?
Not really. The only adjustment you will need to make is to allow the time to meditate regularly. Other than that, any changes in your life will come automatically and spontaneously. Often we notice some of our habits dropping off and other better habits coming into our lifestyle but this, along with everything else, normally happens only as we are ready.
What is a mantra?
Mantra is a Sanskrit word meaning “instrument of the mind.” Mantras are found in many different traditions and can be used for many different purposes. When using a mantra for silent meditation the purpose of the mantra can be to help take us beyond the thinking level of the mind. We silently repeat the mantra and allow the vibration to assist us quieting both body and mind.
How can meditation affect those around me?
As our own life becomes more in balance and in harmony and as we become healthier and happier, we radiate the effects of that health and happiness to our families, friends and everyone around us. Also, on a deeper level, everything we do affects everything else in creation. By practicing meditation and increasing the balance in our life we automatically impact the balance and well being of everything else in the world even if only on some very subtle level.