Types of Meditation

Mindworks | Mindfulness Meditation Blog | Types of Meditation

Mindfulness. Zen. Insight. Tibetan. Korean. Pure Land. Chanting. Mantras. Calm-abiding. When you start to realize how many types are out there, you may well wonder what the best form of meditation is. The answer is both simple and complex: of all the many types of meditation, the best meditation is what’s best for you. What do they all have in common? First, a willingness to try and remain centered in the present moment and observe what’s going on in the mind without giving in to distraction. Second, an interest in exploring that experience of being centered.

It can be helpful to narrow it down: ask yourself why you’re interested in practicing meditation. Is it for the mental and physical health benefits? Do you need some dedicated “you” time? Are you interested in developing more calm and focus? Is meditation an avenue of expression for your “spiritual self”? Or are you looking to explore the mechanisms of the mind? Thinking about your motivation might help you understand what the different types of meditation have to offer. There’s no reason not to try some of them on for size before you decide that you’ve found your perfect fit.

To learn about the various types of meditation and what is right for you, we recommend our free ebook: Getting the Most out of Meditation.

Meditation for Sleep

2022-09-25T01:38:40-07:00By |

Meditation before going to bed If you’ve been struggling to catch some shuteye lately, meditating before bed might help. Statistics show that more than 70 million people deal with sleep disorders - in America alone! Insomnia is an unhealthy condition that plagues far too many people. Several issues are to blame, and notably the [...]

What Is Mantra Meditation?

2022-12-26T16:39:59-08:00By |

A mantra is a syllable, word, or phrase that is repeated during meditation. Mantras can be spoken, chanted, whispered, or repeated in the mind. Most mantra meditation techniques have two essential components: mindfulness meditation and mantra recitation or chanting. While this age-old practice is known to have Buddhist and Hindu roots, forms of “sacred word” [...]

What is Spiritual Meditation?

2023-03-12T22:01:48-07:00By |

At its core, spiritual meditation is the mindful practice of connection to something that is greater, vaster, and deeper than the individual self. It may seem paradoxical, but the path to that connection passes through honest self-reflection. While there are many meditation techniques that look to increase spiritual awareness, they all require an attitude [...]

Guided Meditation for Stress Relief

2022-04-19T11:48:56-07:00By |

A mindful breathing meditation for relaxation Based on the guided meditations for stress reduction presented in Mindworks Working with Stress course, read on to learn how to switch from the usual mode of doing to a mode of non-doing—of simply being—at your own pace. Begin by assuming the correct posture for meditation. Now take a [...]

What are the Different Types of Meditation?

2022-12-18T16:15:14-08:00By |

Some technique of meditation is practiced in virtually every community throughout the world. An ancient tradition, meditation is as relevant in today’s busy world as it ever was. It can lead us to discover a sense of calmness and inner harmony and can help us cope with the pressures of everyday life. Meditation cuts across different religions [...]

What Is Buddhist Meditation?

2023-01-16T10:06:06-08:00By |

There are many forms of meditation and many ideas about what meditation is. While different spiritual paths may associate meditation with contemplation, prayer or other practices, Buddhist meditation is generally associated with mindfulness and awareness. Indeed, although there are a lot more forms of Buddhist meditation than you might think, they all have mindfulness as [...]

How Long Does Meditation Take to Work?

2022-07-24T10:57:52-07:00By |

A good number of new meditators begin sitting with the hope that the holistic benefits of meditation will make themselves felt in a matter of days. They expect meditation to act as a quick fix – like swallowing a pain relief tablet. It isn’t a reasonable expectation. Most genuine meditation teachers say that while a [...]

Walking Meditation and How to Do It

2022-11-29T20:13:11-08:00By |

Mindful Walking Meditation Guide (How to Meditate While Walking) When we think of meditation, we typically picture someone sitting upright in full lotus pose, both their body and mind completely still. But there’s more than one meditation technique, and not all of them require sitting. Walking meditation is just one of four traditional meditation postures [...]

What Are the Four Foundations of Mindfulness?

2023-01-29T20:00:27-08:00By |

Shifting our full attention to the mind itself with direct experience Mindfulness meditation teaches us to be present with whatever arises, accept it without judgment, and allow it to pass. We typically practice mindfulness meditation by choosing a single point of focus, such as breath, and observing it while letting go of distractions if and [...]

Meditation for Uncertain Times

2022-09-04T19:20:13-07:00By |

The Challenge of Finding Stability In Times Of Change & Uncertainty Change is hard, even when it’s expected. In times of great uncertainty, stress and anxiety increase as we attempt to ground ourselves to anything stable or permanent, but find very little we can hold on to. Meditation for uncertain and difficult times reduces stress [...]

Which Type of Meditation is Best?

2022-11-29T20:30:33-08:00By |

The Best Types of Meditation for Beginners — Mindfulness & Awareness Once people understand there’s more than one type of meditation their next question is usually, which type is best? Meditation isn’t ranked on a worst, better, best scale - each type is different and helps us work with the mind in varying ways. The [...]

Why Breath Meditation is Not Only for Beginners

2022-04-24T07:18:58-07:00By |

What are the Benefits of Advanced Breathing Meditation? Most people who are new to meditation are instructed to begin with mindfulness of breath. The breath is a convenient point of focus for meditation, because it’s always with us. But breath meditation is not only for beginners. In fact, it can be quite an advanced practice. [...]

Meditation for Releasing Negative Emotions

2022-12-18T17:14:53-08:00By |

Why Emotions Sometimes Hurt (How Emotional Pain Affects Your Mind) Meditation is a powerful tool for helping us work with negative emotions. Negative emotions are uncomfortable and can be overwhelming, a feeling that often gets worse when we attempt to ignore them or push them away. With meditation, we learn that our negative emotions don’t [...]

Tonglen Meditation – How to Practice

2023-03-12T22:04:17-07:00By |

Laying a foundation for active compassion in your meditation practice Tonglen is an ancient form of meditation that focuses on compassion: connecting with it, developing it, and learning how to apply it in everyday life. The practice centers on imagining that as we exhale, we are sharing the light of well-being and its causes with [...]

Lovingkindness and Compassion Meditation

2022-04-19T17:03:02-07:00By |

How is lovingkindness different from love in meditation practice? In our culture, “love” is a loaded word. We usually think of love as a very positive emotion that should be cultivated, but most of the time it’s very conditional. In other words: I love this about you, but I don’t love that. Or I’ll love [...]

Buddhist Meditation Techniques & Practices

2023-01-16T10:07:25-08:00By |

You probably know that the increasingly popular practices of mindfulness and meditation share Buddhist roots. But did you know that there are many different schools of Buddhism, each with its own meditation techniques and methods? This is because after the time of the historic Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama, in the 6th century BCE, Buddhism spread [...]

Mindful Listening

2022-04-24T07:22:26-07:00By |

Is there a relationship between effective listening and mindfulness? What is mindful listening? Mindfulness, in all its many forms, boils down to being fully aware in the moment, without judgment or expectations, with or without a specific object of meditation. Mindful listening incorporates many of these same elements. Some kinds of mindful listening are meditative; [...]

What is Zen Meditation? Benefits & Techniques

2021-05-14T11:31:16-07:00By |

Zen meditation is an ancient Buddhist tradition that dates back to the Tang Dynasty in 7th century China. From its Chinese origins it spread to Korea, Japan and other Asian lands where it continues to thrive. The Japanese term “Zen” is a derivative of the Chinese word Ch’an, itself a translation of the Indian [...]

The Mindful Entrepreneur | How to Manage a Business and Meditate Effectively

2022-01-08T20:29:17-08:00By |

Meditation for busy business executives Not so very long ago, meditation and entrepreneurship rarely occupied the same bandwidth. Nowadays though, meditation—especially mindfulness—is everywhere, from education to therapies to management and beyond. And busy professionals are looking much more closely at mindfulness meditation and its benefits for both their private and professional lives. In entrepreneurship and [...]

Morning Meditation

2022-04-24T07:23:12-07:00By |

Four mindful ways to wake up your body and energize your mind What are the benefits of morning meditation? As soon as the alarm goes off, we’re probably already thinking about work or study, the people we need to see and those we’d rather not, unfinished business, laundry lists and that all-important cup of coffee [...]

Mindfulness of Sounds – Meditation Practice

2021-05-14T11:31:17-07:00By |

What are meditation sounds? How to use sounds in mindfulness practice Meditation is about paying attention in and to the present moment. But you’ve probably noticed that the present moment gives us lots of choices when it comes to what, in fact, we choose to pay attention to. The breath? Sensations? A mantra or phrase? [...]

The Great Message of Impermanence

2022-08-19T11:11:00-07:00By |

Change and the law of impermanence — Life's great wake-up call One of the most powerful things about being alive is that we’re directly confronted with change. We’re confronted with the fact that we stand on a ground that is constantly shifting; we're breathing air that is constantly changing. There's nothing really solid that we [...]

Finding Your Mantra

2021-05-14T11:31:17-07:00By |

Personal mantras explained: their use and benefits What is a mantra? A mantra is a word or phrase that is repeated to bring out its positive, transformative energy. Mantras can be as short as one syllable or as long as a paragraph. They can be repeated in one’s mother tongue or in their source language. [...]

Meditation in Motion

2022-03-10T20:14:03-08:00By |

6 Easy-To-Apply Methods to Practice Mindful Movements Every Day Even the Buddha, who is usually portrayed meditating in perfect stillness, had to move from time to time. He and his followers walked from town to town and went about their daily business of eating, drinking, washing, and so on. Indeed, in one of his most [...]

Noting Meditation Practice

2023-01-29T19:58:40-08:00By |

How to use labels to make a busy mind more manageable Oh, those pesky thoughts. When we’re in deep meditation, thoughts, sensations and emotions can feel like the distant drone of bumblebees. They’re familiar and benign; we’re aware of them, but they don’t pull us out of our practice and sense of well-being. Often, however, [...]

What is Vipassana Meditation?

2022-01-08T20:27:03-08:00By |

Vipassana meditation, also known as insight or awareness meditation, is best summarized by Socrates’s famous maxim “To know thyself is the beginning of wisdom.” The goal of vipassana is to give us insight into the true nature of our experiences. 2500 years ago, the Buddha discovered that knowledge, insight and goodness are the only reliable [...]

Meditation on the Power of Gratitude

2021-06-21T17:07:58-07:00By |

We all know that it’s important to appreciate the good things in our lives and to be thankful for the acts of kindness that come our way. Gratitude is part of being a good person; combined with kindness to others, it makes the world a more decent and livable place. But its power is often [...]

A Brief History of Meditation

2021-05-14T11:33:52-07:00By |

Meditators swear by the practice’s ability to bring enduring positive change into their lives. But where does meditation come from? What are its origins? Who thought it up? We don’t really know. The earliest records of meditation practice date from approximately 1500 years BCE (Before Common Era). It seems to have been an integral [...]

What Does It Mean to Have Visions During Meditation?

2021-05-14T11:33:53-07:00By |

Some people report having visions during meditation. Having a “vision” is defined as experiencing something out of the ordinary that wouldn’t be real in the normal state of things, but that seems very real to us when it occurs. One of the characteristics of a “vision” is that others can’t see it. By definition, a [...]

Lovingkindness in Meditation

2022-04-19T17:07:23-07:00By |

Meditation changes our relationship to pain What is lovingkindness meditation?  While there are many different types of meditation, there are specific practices that we call lovingkindness where we actually train our hearts and minds to wish for well-being for others — “may all beings be at ease”. This is a universal, healthy desire that we [...]

What is guided meditation?

2022-06-24T19:34:17-07:00By |

In guided meditation, our practice is shaped by another person’s voice. Because the mind has a tendency to wander where it will, many of us find it easier to focus and relax when our minds aren’t entirely left to their own devices. This form of meditation is often led by a (real live) guide in [...]

How to Meditate: Tibetan Buddhism

2021-05-14T11:33:53-07:00By |

As Buddhist meditation and philosophy spread throughout the East many hundreds of years ago, they acquired the flavors of the lands where they took root. Today, when you look at some of the Buddhist meditation techniques of Japan, Indochina, Sri Lanka and Tibet, for example, there are certainly similarities, but there are also some notable [...]

What is compassion meditation?

2022-04-19T17:09:39-07:00By |

All forms of meditation center on presence and focusing. When we practice compassion meditation, our focus is well-being: the well-being of others as well as of ourselves. Compassion is a quality that can be trained and “muscled” through exercise and repetition. And as it also happens, focusing on others’ well-being actually—and quantifiably—makes us feel better [...]

What is Meditation Used For?

2022-07-25T16:25:03-07:00By |

(Drum roll…) Meditation is everywhere: schools, community centers, medical centers, in the military, in churches, temples, and ashrams, and the list goes on and on. Seeing as how mindfulness and meditation seem to permeate our culture nowadays, “What is meditation used for?” is a perfectly legitimate question. The short answer is: developing well-being, focus and [...]

Anger Management and Meditation

2022-06-25T15:41:07-07:00By |

Mindfulness can teach us that anger doesn’t have to be a problem. Anger’s not the problem, greed is not the problem, delusion is not the problem. The problem is how we relate to these difficulties. Here we’ll look at anger in particular since it’s the most unwieldy of them all. You don’t see many books [...]

Meditation for Seniors

2021-05-14T11:34:46-07:00By |

We all dream of aging like good wine, getting better and better as the years progress. And we all know that this dream is rarely realized: growing old comes with its fair share of losses and challenges. Memory loss accelerates, the digestive function becomes more finicky, aches and pains seem to spring out of nowhere [...]

What is Self Reflection Meditation?

2021-06-04T20:29:05-07:00By |

“All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone.” These pithy words were spoken by the French philosopher Blaise Pascal in the 17th century. We often become so swept up by our dreams, ambitions and regrets that we lose the ability for quiet reflection. And while there are times [...]

The Challenges of Silent Meditation

2021-05-14T11:34:47-07:00By |

For centuries, silent meditation was reserved for the privileged few who had renounced the world and sought communion – with the divine, the universe, or their own inner being - in remote cloisters and retreat settings around the world. Nowadays though, intensive silent meditation practices have become widely available through a variety of organizations, [...]

What is Gong Meditation and How Is It Practiced?

2021-05-14T11:34:47-07:00By |

Gong meditation is a unique type of sound practice that involves using therapeutic gong sounds and vibrations to bring about healing. This practice is also sometimes referred to as a “gong bath” because participants are “bathed” in meditation gong sound waves. The goal of “gong meditation” is usually therapeutic, whereas mindfulness meditation has many therapeutic benefits, [...]

History, Benefits and Uses of Meditation Balls

2021-05-14T11:34:47-07:00By |

Meditation balls - also known as “Chinese medicine balls,” “Baoding balls,” “relaxation balls” and “Zen meditation balls” - are two little balls that can be held in one hand. As you roll them in the palm of your hand, the relative positions of both balls is constantly switching. Initially, the balls maintain contact even as [...]

The Meaning and Function of the Meditation Bell

2021-05-14T11:34:47-07:00By |

Since ancient times, Buddhist monks and nuns have used bells as part of their daily meditation practices. Among other things, bells are considered a meditation enhancer, as they help practitioners keep their attention focused on the present moment. The sound of the meditation bell is thought to promote a sense of peace and calmness. Advanced [...]

5 of the Best Books About Meditation

2022-04-24T06:17:53-07:00By |

Meditation requires a great deal of patience and commitment – but we all know it’s worth the effort! Sometimes, though, it’s helpful to balance the “patience and commitment” part with “energy and relaxation.” That’s when you might reach for a good book on meditation and juice up on inspiration. We’ve made it easy by [...]

Daily Meditation

2022-10-04T12:15:07-07:00By |

Many people rely on daily readings and meditation to help them maintain balance and a healthy spiritual life. Those who adhere to a religious tradition have sacred texts that can inspire and guide them throughout the day. The Hebrew Bible, New Testament, Quran, and Hindu and Buddhist scripture are the bases for the faith [...]

What is Deep Meditation?

2021-05-14T11:34:49-07:00By |

Beginners and seasoned meditators alike wonder what deep meditation should feel like. In their quest for deep meditation, some meditators who think they are not progressing fast enough may be tempted to switch techniques. But this may not be the best option. Know that it takes patience, time and training to master meditation, “deep” [...]

What Are The Differences Between Meditation and Relaxation?

2021-05-14T11:34:49-07:00By |

It’s the old “an apple is a fruit but a fruit isn’t necessarily an apple” equation. Meditation is relaxing, but relaxation isn’t meditation. For individuals suffering from physical, mental or emotional stress, meditation opens the door to deep relaxation. In addition to relaxation, those who meditate often enjoy improved health and well-being, reduced anxiety, [...]

How Does Meditation Help You Stay Calm?

2021-05-14T11:36:41-07:00By |

How To Stay Calm - How Does Meditation Help? For many of those looking to “keep calm” and de-stress, meditation might just be the ideal solution. Meditation practices vary widely around the globe, and among them are calming meditation techniques that can effectively help body and spirit relax. Today’s busy lifestyles not only tend to [...]

What Is Walking Meditation?

2022-11-29T20:26:50-08:00By |

We don’t need a special set-up to meditate. We can practice mindfulness meditation while sitting at the desk, doing the dishes or taking a walk. Mindful walking meditation is a perfect complement to our seated meditation practice – it’s “meditation in motion.” And walking meditation is great for beginners since walking is a familiar part [...]

What is Chakra Meditation?

2021-05-14T11:36:41-07:00By |

What is a Chakra? “Chakra” is a Sanskrit word that literally means wheel or cycle. In the context of spiritual disciplines such as yoga, the chakras are considered to be wheel-like energy centers that are not physically discernable but belong to the subtle spiritual body and connect it to the material one. The 7 main chakras [...]

Best Mindfulness Meditation Exercises

2023-01-29T20:03:52-08:00By |

Mindfulness meditation is gaining popularity across the world, and for good reason. Studies have shown that mindfulness meditation exercises contribute to creativity, decrease anxiety and cultivate peace of mind. The basis for mindfulness is maintaining a regular sitting meditation practice. The awareness and simplicity experienced while sitting can carry over into your daily routine. [...]

Best Meditation Techniques for Seniors

2022-07-24T10:43:32-07:00By |

Benefits and meditation tips for seniors Just because you’re no spring chicken, that doesn’t mean your goose is cooked as far as meditation is concerned. In some ways, older adults have an edge when it comes to meditating. If you’re a senior, you may have more time to devote to practice than when you were younger, [...]

What Is Swimming Meditation?

2021-05-14T11:36:42-07:00By |

Doctors recommend swimming as one of the best exercises around, and for good reason. When we swim, the main muscle groups all go to work in a way that doesn’t put undue stress on the body. This makes it a wholesome aerobic exercise for young and old alike. The health benefits of this kind of [...]

What Is Channeling Meditation?

2021-05-24T03:57:10-07:00By |

Meditation means different things to different people. The most mainstream form of meditation nowadays is mindfulness, but there are plenty of other forms, including awareness, mantra, contemplative, relaxing, gong, visualization and so on. The New Age movement has revitalized old shamanistic methods that are meant to enable communication with the deepest inner self, the divine, [...]

Go to Top