There are all sorts of meditations out there that can be used for a variety of purposes. Each teacher of meditation seems to have one that he or she prefers, usually because that form of meditation has worked well for that person and a number or his or her students.
However, if you have tried to learn a form of meditation and have become frustrated because, after due practice, you feel it isn’t doing anything for you, don’t give up on meditation. Just try other forms of meditation!
Ask Yourself What You Want from Meditation
Are you looking to relax, lower blood pressure, or are you looking for insight or deeper spiritual experience? Some forms of meditation can do all of the above but usually each meditation is particularly good at bringing a specific outcome, especially if practiced with due diligence. Here are some meditations I use which work for me for the purposes indicated.
- To relax and perhaps lower blood pressure and heart rate: On a quick deep inhalation from the solar plexus, count three and on the exhalation count seven, letting the breath out slowly. Or you may trying counting two on the inhalation and four on the exhalation—just make sure the exhalation is at least twice as long as the inhalation. This will quickly give you feeling of becoming more relaxed. After a minute of doing it, you may fall asleep! This is a good practice to do for about a minute before doing another form of mediation that is better suited for something else.
- To gain intuitive insight: After doing a relaxing meditation such as the one above, tell yourself that you would like to receive insight about a specific and genuine concern you have , either for yourself or someone else. Follow an inspirational meditation such as the Inspired Heart™ Meditation developed by Henry Reed, Ph.D., which includes the following:
a. Initially just observing the breath, the inflows and the outflows.
b. Then give thanks on the inflow for the breath that is coming to you like a gift, an inspiration!
c. After a few moments, imagine letting go of any negative energy on the outflow.
d. For a few minutes sit observing the breath, saying thanks on the inhalation and letting go on the exhalation.
e. Then watch of any form of insight to come: images, thoughts, sounds, impressions, feelings, physical sensations. These will be pertinent and provide inspiration to helping with the concern brought to the meditation.
- For a deeper experience of God: Try doing a form of centering meditation. Basically this involves sitting comfortably while meditating on a meaningful word such as Spirit or Jesus. One repeats the word when one finds one’s thoughts are wondering. What may result is something like this: you “see” your thoughts passing by like boats on a river. And below you sense something like an ocean of profound peace.