The Buddhist Tradition
When it comes to meditation, there are different ways of performing this practice. For example, Hinduism, Taoism and Celtic Christianity also incorporate meditation into their spiritual and philosophical tradition. However, Celtic Christianity and Buddhism are quite similar in method. With Buddhist meditation techniques, there is a great emphasis on solitude and isolation. Sitting alone by a tree or mountain, Buddhists feel it leads them to “spiritual awakening.”
In order to achieve “Buddha nature,” it’s necessary for you to look within yourself and discover the connections among you and the world around you. This is where meditation comes in, because it enables you to become more aware of this interconnectedness.
Aside from the correct breathing and posture, there are other ways that can make your meditation session more like a traditional Buddhist practice. Below are some Buddhist meditation techniques you can incorporate in your every day session.
Both Hinduism and Buddhism use Mandalas. These are artistic, symmetrical diagrams often composed of circles, which include detailed images, symbols and divine beings. The circle is a representation of the goals of meditation: wholeness, healing and unity.
You can use a mandala in your meditation session by placing or hanging it in front of you where you can see it. Then you can look at the images and be mindful of them. The mandala can give you various experiences such as feeling peace, harmony and oneness.
Mantras are words or phrases that you chant in order reach a spiritual sense of being. You might be familiar with Om from Buddhism, which is used for its calming, vibrational effect on the mind and body. There is also another commonly used Buddhist chant, Om mani padme hum. This mantra expresses the divine being that exists in everyone.
When you’re choosing a mantra to chant in your meditation, it’s important to pick one that is positive and uplifting. It can be composed of a simple phrase that has a significant meaning to you. Then you can chant your mantra for five minutes during meditation and focus on the sounds of the words and the vibration you feel and hear.
When you meditate on a regular basis, it’s easy to fall into a pattern and ponder the same issues repeatedly. Zen Buddhists use a koan as a way to attain enlightenment. It’s basically a riddle and a familiar one is, “What is the sound of one hand clapping?” The idea isn’t necessarily to solve the riddle but to change up your thoughts and look deeper.
Implementing some of these Buddhist meditation techniques into your practice is a way to change your routine, and it can give you a more rewarding meditation experience. Challenging your mind in a different way can enable you to reach a closer sense of enlightenment.
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- Bill Anderton. Meditation. Barnes & Noble, 2003.
- How to Meditate - https://www.how-to-meditate.org/