Basic Steps for Learning Meditation

rishikesh

In many of my articles on self improvement, I often suggest meditation can be an invaluable aid to alleviating many of our daily problems. I don’t look upon meditation just as a problem solver, I meditate because I enjoy the consciousness of meditation. But, if we can gain real peace of mind through meditation, there is no problem that cannot be helped in some way. These a few preliminary steps for learning how to meditate.

1. Location.

Firstly, find a suitable quiet place for meditation. If it is very hard to find somewhere quiet, use some meditative music to drown out background sounds. If possible keep a corner of your room reserved just for meditation; this will help build up a meditative vibration in that particular part.

2. The Basics.

  • It is important to meditate with a straight back. (If you try meditating whilst lying down, you are more likely to fall asleep, than entering into a high state of meditation.)
  • Don’t meditate after eating a heavy meal – you will feel lethargic and sleepy.
  • If possible shower and wear clean clothes before meditating.
  • Try to switch off. If you try to meditate straight after work, you may be still thinking about the day. Try reading some books on meditation to help make the transition from work to meditation.
  • If you have difficulty creating time see: Finding Time for Relaxation / Meditation

3. Relaxation.

To meditate it is important to relax and switch off. Tell yourself that for the next 10-15 minutes, you don’t have to think about the past or future – just concentrate on the present moment and your meditation. Let go of any tension in your body and try to be fully aware of the present moment. This stage of relaxation is a preliminary stage to meditation; but, it is worth emphasizing that meditation is more than just relaxation.

4. Breathing.

The most helpful aid to meditation is proper breathing. Our breathing has a big impact on our mind; if we can quieten our breathing it will help slow down our mind. Focusing on our breathing and nothing else will have a beneficial effect on our meditation. The beauty of meditation is its simplicity. – Just be fully conscious of your breathing, feel you are breathing in peace; if you can do this without getting distracted you will be able to meditate most effectively.

5. The Calm Mind

“When you meditate, what you actually do is to enter into a calm or still, silent mind. We have to be fully aware of the arrival and attack of thoughts. That is to say, we shall not allow any thought, divine or undivine, good or bad, to enter into our mind. Our mind should be absolutely silent. Then we have to go deep within; there we have to observe our real existence. “

- Sri Chinmoy

With these preliminary stages you can now concentrate on cultivating a calm and quiet mind. This is the essence of meditation, whatever form of meditation you pursue, they will share this common goal of quietening the mind. It is only when we can have a mind free of thoughts that we will be able to experience real meditation. What happens is that we can quieten the mind we can expand our consciousness and bring the soul to the fore. We we feel an expansion of our consciousness; when we have a good feeling towards the world, – this is real meditation.

6. What is Good meditation?

We can know we are meditating well when we have a good view towards the world. If we feel tension and disturbance then our meditation is not working well. We should have a feeling of simplicity and humility; if we feel proud with ourselves this is not a good sign. Meditation aims to reduce the ego, not expand it.

7. But Meditation is Difficult

Many newcomers to meditation find it difficult to quieten the mind. This is because the mind is so used to thinking that when we try to stop it is quite a shock to the system. But, if we really want to do something we persevere and practice; meditation is no different, the more we put into meditation the more we will get from it.

More on Improving Your Meditation

How To Control Your Thoughts 

Video: Meditation Silence – Silencing the mind

Other Links

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25 Responses to Basic Steps for Learning Meditation

  1. Ana March 31, 2008 at 11:41 am #

    Perfect! … Excellent steps for beginners. Thank you!

  2. control thoughts? July 29, 2008 at 4:39 am #

    you can meditate everywhere. Especially in busy places, during walking, while taking a shower, during driving… cooking, And yes, even lying down, is a way to meditate. If you fall asleep, you needed that!
    Music and meditation don’t go together that well. Just following the breath (not forcing it at all) but just a natural breathing is more than enough to meditate.
    If we are fixed to meditate in a “special place” and under “special circumstances”, we will have difficulties to meditate virtually anywhere. Meditation is there in each and every minute of our life. I think it’s also called mindfulness.
    It starts with following our the normal breath-flow. And IF distractions pop up, just let them be and observe.

  3. Ariel - We Are All One September 10, 2008 at 3:20 pm #

    Thank you for sharing this. There are some wonderful ideas posted here.

    The showering and clean clothes idea definitely helps.

    Could you comment on the importance of having a straight back? I find I’ll often slouch down or relax a bit, yet it’s often suggested to maintain a straight posture. Is this to maintain a sense of alertness? To keep the energy flowing through the body properly? I’m curious as to the importance of this aspect of meditation.

    Thank you!

    Much Love :)

  4. Shane Magee September 12, 2008 at 12:50 am #

    Ariel:

    You have described both reasons exactly – to stay alert and to keep the meditative energies circulating. I’m sure you’ve noticed when you slouch, your mind is probably wandering at the same time…

    controlthoughts:

    I humbly disagree with you as regards music and meditation, I have found it an invaluable aid to my practise – In fact, I might just write my next post about it :)

  5. Kallal Shing December 7, 2008 at 11:59 pm #

    Dear Sir,

    I like to learn meditation.

    Thanks.

  6. MD GHOUSE March 19, 2009 at 11:03 am #

    I MEDITATE TO ACHIEVE MY LOVE

  7. ail daniels April 2, 2009 at 6:56 pm #

    i would like to order this book for medicatin and fasting

  8. kiran July 7, 2009 at 11:20 am #

    The thoughts in me are not permitting me to flourish.I failed in my medicine exams….i need meditation…thanx for giving some basic steps

  9. siddram January 3, 2010 at 3:05 am #

    hello sir,is it possible to meditate during our sleeping hours?

  10. Stephen Yeung August 14, 2010 at 12:51 pm #

    I used to meditate, it was relaxing but unfulfilling. I heard and read it was a good thing but I was in the mindset of all the things you describe in your ‘ego’ pages and was ignorant of myself. I have now seen my ego and can understand the reason for meditation and it’s benefits. I think it will be different this time and feel fortunate to be at this place in myself.

  11. Ashley Miles @ Improving Your Personal Growth January 5, 2011 at 12:01 am #

    Tnx for the nice tips…Knowing how to meditate is one of the most important skills you learn for managing stress, building willpower and confidence, and for keeping your body in good physical and emotional health.

  12. ankur March 14, 2011 at 11:46 pm #

    Sir with a great honour I feel that these are valuable information for all.

  13. sharanabasappa May 13, 2011 at 3:14 am #

    steps are useful to all

  14. sharanabasappa May 13, 2011 at 3:15 am #

    thank you

  15. rohit goel July 22, 2011 at 8:40 am #

    hey i hv just cmplteted my engineering but i m so dpressed not ti getting job yet
    thanx for telling me about meditation
    hope it will work better for me
    thanks

  16. malinga May 8, 2012 at 1:57 am #

    dear sir,i would like to learn meditation

  17. jin May 9, 2012 at 1:43 am #

    i love this block..i have been meditating for the past 3months now..and i think i am reaping the benefits that come along with it…thanks a lot!

  18. AGOHA IKECHUKWU. One of jehovah's witnesses. October 6, 2012 at 12:23 pm #

    Read God’s word the bible daily, and you will find it more enjoyable. Read psalms 1 verse 1 and 2

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