Why meditate? What are the benefits, and how are they measured? How do you learn to meditate? Is there a difference between meditation and mindfulness? Will you need to sit on cushions and find perfect silence? All are valid questions, and we’re here to help you with this guide to meditation. We’ll explain the meditation basics and dig into the setup, the styles of practTypes of meditation
Experienced meditators agree: a daily meditation practice can have significant benefits for mental and physical health. But one thing they probably won’t agree on? The most effective types of meditation. That’s simply because it’s different for everyone. After all, there are literally hundreds of meditation techniques encompassing practices from different traditions, cultures, spiritual disciplines, and religions. There’s not a universally accepted “best” or “most effective” type; rather, it is our individual preference that helps us choose the one (or ones) that works best for us. Here’s a breakdown of some of the more popular types of meditation to get you started.ice, the science behind it, and the discoveries that may happen over time.
What is mindfulness?
Mindfulness is the ability to be present, to rest in the here and now, fully engaged with whatever we’re doing in the moment
Meditation is a skill
Learning to meditate is like learning any other skill. Think of it like exercising a muscle that you’ve never really worked out before. It takes consistent practice to get comfortable. And it’s usually easier if you have a teacher. We’ve got you covered there.
It's meditation practice, not meditation perfect
There’s no such thing as perfect meditation. Sometimes your focus will wander or you’ll forget to follow your breath. That’s OK. It’s part of the experience. What’s most important is to meditate consistently. It’s one of those things where the journey is more important than the destination.
What is yoga?
Yoga is a mind and body practice with a 5,000-year history in ancient Indian philosophy. Various styles of yoga combine physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation or relaxation.
In more recent years, it has become popular as a form of physical exercise based upon poses that promote improved control of the mind and body and enhance well-being.
There are several different types of yoga and many disciplines within the practice. This article explores the history, philosophy, and various branches of yoga.
In the modern world, the South Asian art of yoga has expanded to all corners of the globe. While it is now a popular form of exercise and meditation, this has not always been the case.
There is no written record of the inventor of yoga.
Male yoga practitioners are known as yogis, and female yoga practitioners are called yoginis. Both practiced and taught yoga long before any written account of yoga came into existence.
Over the next five millennia, yogis passed the discipline down to their students, and many different schools of yoga developed as the practice expanded its global reach and popularity.
The "Yoga Sutra," a 2,000-year-old treatise on yogic philosophy by the Indian sage Patanjali, is a guidebook on how to master the mind, control the emotions, and grow spiritually. The Yoga Sutra is the earliest written record of yoga and one of the oldest texts in existence and
provides the framework for all modern yoga. Yoga is well known for its postures and poses, but they were not a key part of original yoga traditions in India.
The six branches are:
Hatha yoga: This is the physical and mental branch designed to prime the body and mind.
Raja yoga: This branch involves meditation and strict adherence to a series of disciplinary steps known as the "eight limbs" of yoga.
Karma yoga: This is a path of service that aims to create a future free from negativity and selfishness.
Bhakti yoga: This aims to establish the path of devotion, a positive way to channel emotions and cultivate acceptance and tolerance.
Jnana yoga: This branch of yoga is about wisdom, the path of the scholar, and developing the intellect through study.
Tantra yoga: This is the pathway of ritual, ceremony, or consummation of a relationship.
Approaching yoga with a specific goal in mind can help a person decide which branch to follow.
The word "chakra" literally means spinning wheel.
Yoga maintains that chakras are center points of energy, thoughts, feelings, and the physical body. According to yogic teachers, chakras determine the way people experience reality through emotional reactions, desires or aversions, levels of confidence or fear, and even physical symptoms and effects.
When energy becomes blocked in a chakra, it is said to trigger physical, mental, or emotional imbalances that manifest in symptoms, such as anxiety, lethargy, or poor digestion.
Asanas are the many physical positions in Hatha yoga. People who practice yoga use asanas to free energy and stimulate an imbalanced chakra.
There are seven major chakras, each with their own focus:
Sahasrara: The "thousand-petaled" or "crown" chakra represents the state of pure consciousness. This chakra is located at the crown of the head, and the color white or violet represents it. Sahasrara involves matters of inner wisdom and physical death.
Ajna: The "command" or "third-eye chakra" is a meeting point between two important energetic streams in the body. Ajna corresponds to the colors violet, indigo, or deep blue, though traditional yoga practitioners describe it as white. The ajna chakra relates to the pituitary gland, which drives growth and development.
Vishuddha: The color red or blue represents the "especially pure" or "throat" chakra. Practitioners consider this chakra to be the home of speech, hearing, and metabolism.
Anahata: The "unstruck" or "heart" chakra relates to the colors green and pink. Key issues involving anahata include complex emotions, compassion, tenderness, unconditional love, equilibrium, rejection, and wellbeing.
Manipura: Yellow represents the "jewel city" or "navel" chakra. Practitioners connect this chakra with the digestive system, as well as personal power, fear, anxiety, developing opinions, and tendencies towards an introverted personality.
Svadhishthana: Practitioners claim that the "one's own base" or "pelvic" chakra is the home of the reproductive organs, the genitourinary system, and the adrenal gland.
Muladhara: The "root support" or "root chakra" is at the base of the spine in the coccygeal region. It is said to contain our natural urges relating to food, sleep, sex, and survival, as well as the source of avoidance and fear