Of course, we know that we are all multifaceted unique beings. One of the ways we can accommodate the constantly changing nature of life is to tune into our unwavering essence. Maybe you’ve had the same meditation practice for a while or maybe you are just getting started.
Either way, in order to discover every drop of your potential joy, you need to dig into all different layers of your being. This is why we have compiled different meditation types and approaches for you to explore.
Focused Attention Meditation
This style of meditation is the classical approach to meditation. This style is used in tantric, yoga, Buddhist, and Hindu traditions. It involves maintaining a tunnel-like single focus concentration. Your focus is commonly placed on sacred objects.
These include mala beads, a candle, a mantra, gods/goddesses, an altar, a body part, or even a visualization. The technique involves maintaining pure focus and allowing external sounds, sensations, or thoughts to exist without labeling or attaching to them.
To anchor your complete present focus singularly and continuously will take practice. You will find your mind becoming distracted or drifting off. Allow yourself to gently guide it back to your focal point.
Holding on to anything is like holding on to your breath. You will suffocate. The only way to get anything in the physical universe is by letting go of it. Let go and it will be yours forever.Deepak Chopra
A study published within Consciousness and Cognition, by Lorenza Colzato and Iliana Samara from the Leiden Institute of Brain and Cognition at Leiden University compared the results of 36 participants.
Half of which practiced Focused Attention Meditation while the other half practiced Open Monitor Meditation. After their 20-minute meditation sessions, participants were studied to see how they responded to discerned distractions from valuable information through a visual stimulus test.
The FAM meditators showed in comparison to the OMM meditators displayed a higher level of adaptive cognitive processing. The results proved that both forms of meditation can immediately increase the adaptability and effectiveness of processing information.
Another meditation type, Metta, from the language Pali, is also known as loving-kindness. It was spoked of within the Vedas around 1500 BCE. Whereas typical meditation practices guide you to empty yourself and find neutrality through surfacing emotions and external distractions, this meditation guides you to not only feel but to fill up.
The meditation consists of sending love, wishes for happiness, and mental hope for joy to oneself, strangers, enemies, and even the earth we walk on. The goal is to cultivate and build up a state of deep compassion for all life.
To embody loving-kindness, Metta. Emotions such as envy, anger, jealousy, and criticism become uprooted when one taps into the Metta consciousness.
One of the benefits of this meditation compared to other meditation techniques of emptying oneself the act of shifting from negative to positive can commonly be more accessible than negative to neutral.
To find the constant inner peace that is untouched by change one needs to find the seat of neutrality. Although at least in my experience it is hard to remain seated there when I am trying to let go of negative emotions.
I seem to let them distract me more than if I was letting go of positive emotion. Therefore, by dowsing myself in loving-kindness not only do I make myself a vibrational match for Metta consciousness, but I can find a deeper rooting in my inner peace.
Meditation is not evasion; it is a serene encounter with realityThich Nhat Hanh
Open Monitor Meditation
This meditation style is similar to mindfulness meditation. The difference is that within this practice your awareness is not restricted to a specific anchoring point. You will not specifically cultivate a mindful peripheral vision within this meditation.
The way this meditation technique differs from open monitor meditation is very slight. As you do remain objective with thoughts, emotions, sensations that arise, it is very similar. Although wherein an open monitor meditation style your focus encompasses the present moment with no direction, mindfulness meditation will guide you to have a certain degree of focus.
This is because your point of focus will act as an anchor for you to then experience your peripheral vision. Through both, the practice is to observe and allow things to be without needing to label them.
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