Basically, when someone describes meditation they describe it as a breathing exercise that is not fully correct. For a very long time, we are making this mistake calling meditation a breathing exercise.
I know meditation includes breathing, but meditation is not completely about breathing, some parts of meditation involve breathing, it's because breathing is essential for our survival.
If meditation is not about breathing then what is it about?
First of all, you must know this breathing exercise means Yoga, not meditation.
Meditation means realizing your inner being by connecting yourself to nature or to the Supreme being (The supreme soul or you can say, GOD).
In my personal experience, I have seen many people meditating for years, yet they haven't benefited from it in any way.
It's because they never learn the real meditation and how they should meditate in the first place.
So in this chapter, I will share some things about meditation and how you can begin your meditation journey.
Let's dive into the inner being.
What is meditation!
In simple words, meditation is the technique to awaken your inner consciousness, awareness, and inner being. There are so many ways to define meditation and meditation techniques but all of them serve the same purpose i.e awakening your inner consciousness.
A lot of people ask about how to wake up their inner self. Also, you might have crossed people asking, who are we? Or who I am?
Basically, this who I am thing has gained a lot of attention in the last few years, because of that, a lot of people are moving towards finding their true selves. But in reality, there is nothing like that!
We must understand this; There are two sides to human life, one is physical the outer body, and the other is inner being (some call it a soul or metaphysical being).
That metaphysical being resides in every one of us (considering ourselves a body), inaccurate words that metaphysical being is us, the Soul.
Basically, not many people understand the concept of the soul because it's very hard to explain something that you don't see or not capable of seeing like we all experience AIR but we can't explain it, even though we sense air all the time plus we are surviving only because of Air.
But it's very hard to explain what it looks like or how "Air" it actually is? The same goes for our soul, it's very hard to define a soul.
In actual it's a living energy that is capable of doing things (i think that is not enough to define it fully). Because it needs much more explanation.
Why talking about the soul is so important here?
I want you to know this; we all are a form of energy and that energy has certain limitations, these limitations decide everything for us, like our losses and gains of energy, mostly we believe eating food lends energy for survival, that is true, but not completely.
We need two kinds of energy for survival.
1. Energy for our body.
2. Energy for our soul.
Gaining energy for the body is not difficult, you just need to eat food for that, the better you'll eat better your body's energy will get, but the things with your soul are quite different?
Because your soul doesn't get energized by the food you eat, you need to connect with GOD in certain ways for adding energy to your soul because God is the only ultimate source of energy, that's why a lot of people pray to him.
Also, you may have seen people who meditate and pray to GOD regularly have a different aura than those who don't.
It's because as a human there is only one way to gain energy that is to pray with GOD, it doesn't matter who we are in terms of religion (because religion is the human-created thing), but we all pray to GOD by different means and ways. Nearly all religion, Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, and Islam has a tradition of prayers.
This is so because we all receive energy from GOD while we pray to him. And the amount of energy received depends on how much you pray to him. It's simple practical science.
Moreover, there is one more way to add energy to the human soul i.e creating positive thoughts or affirmations, as we all know that we lose every while we think negatively about ourselves and we gain energy while we think positive about ourselves.
How prayers are meditative?
Basically, prayers have nothing to do with meditation, but the words we use while praying are the key point for meditation.
During prayers, we Chant the name of GOD in different ways, and that's the way to connect to him.
I am not telling, you to be religious for meditation, I am only putting all religions perform meditation in different ways. Therefore, if you're a religious person then you're already meditating.
Then why so many still don't find peace in their religions?
It's because religions throughout the world have made the prayers more rigid and incorrect.
It's because most religions are forcing people to follow certain norms before making them a part of that religion, and in some cases, you need to chant the name of the following person whom they consider the messenger of GOD.
Religions have so many things that are not required for connecting with GOD, yet they are in there, only to create a difference among religions. That's what makes all religions wrong.
Then what is true meditation?
Meditation is just simply the process of osmosis. In which you're a resin and you need to dive into the water, and the flow of energy will automatically take place from higher concentration to lower concentration and resin will start gaining weight.
The same goes for your meditation process, you need to dive into the thoughts of GOD and you will automatically start gaining energy from him.
Meditation is not a one-day thing, it takes years to accomplish the complete peaceful state in meditation, even for achieving that peaceful state you need to be regular in your meditation practice.
Now, comes the fun part, it is so easy then why we have so many unsatisfied people around.
It's because not many people are capable of creating thoughts for GOD, also a lot of people don't know how to think positively.
Because they don't know who's GOD, and what they need to say to him.
So remember this; We all are children of GOD and we need to talk to him as we talk to our biological father or mother, plus we can build any relation with him.
Basically, talking to GOD is like saying positive affirmations about him, Like, I am a son of supreme soul and I am as powerful as he is, no one in this world is capable of doing anything wrong to me.
These kinds of thoughts really work also help you to improve your mental stability and self-awareness, according to my experience, this is true meditation. Not the one that people try to teach us. Like, hold your breath, breath deeper, and all.
So if you want to start your meditation journey then you should try this out, also breathing is involved in this also.
Let's talk about types of meditation.
Basically, there are no types of meditation, only the thing that creates a difference in meditation techniques is the posture of your body, rest remains the same.
Meditation is completely dependent on how you decide to do it. As you know that Bharat (India) has a deep culture of meditation and 1000+ types of meditations that are taught in Bharat (India) because of that a lot of people are confused about meditation and its types.
All meditation serves the same purpose that is to make you more peaceful and stable, so it doesn't matter which one you're practicing you must do it right.
Some of the types you might hear are;
2. Isha Kriya.
3. Mantra meditation ( Depends on differents mantras).
I think these three are best and you must try them because they are really simple and don't ask you to do anything abnormal.
Remember this; If you are practicing any kind of meditation and hurting your emotional structure, you must stop that right away okay. Because meditation has both positives and negatives.
Purpose of these meditation types.
All meditation process serves only two purposes.
1. Enhances your concentration powers.
2. Improves your mental structure.
I think these are very basic things that meditation helps you achieve, normally people get misguided because they don't know why they want to meditate and how they will check the progress.
Basically checking your meditation progress is impossible because it can only be checked while you're facing any sort of problem in your life.
How to start your meditation journey
I think you must not confuse yourself with too many meditation forms at the start because there are so many types taught in different countries and cultures. So to start, you must start with the basics and move accordingly.
1. Find a quiet spot free from distractions; Obviously pro can meditate anywhere, but not a newbie because a new bird needs to learn a lot of things before understanding meditation, so turn off your devices and sit in a quiet corner of your house.
2. Try to meditate for a short time period during the start; As you are just starting so you must meditate for 5 to 10min only.
3. Pay attention to your body; You need to make sure your body must be fully comfortable in your sitting posture, it must not feel pain in any way. Try to sit in Padmasana or Sukhasana, if you're comfortable.
4. Focus on your breath; As we consider breathing as the source of our thoughts, so in most meditation methods we start by focusing on breathing and try to make it slow because the slower you breathe the relaxer you will feel.
5. Notice your thoughts; Thoughts are a vital part of your meditation plus your life because your thoughts are responsible for your feelings.
You can not be sad without having sad thoughts, so you need to understand the importance of your thoughts because meditation is all about directing your thoughts in the right direction so that you can feel better and live happily.
During the start don't judge yourself and your thoughts, because most of the time we get ugly thoughts while we try to meditate, so don't judge yourself just focus on your breathing and try to create some positive thoughts.
Final tips for meditating
If you have decided to dive into meditation practice then you should consider these tips.
1. Start slow; You must know this; Meditation is a very slow process it is like homeopathic meditation, works slowly but eradicates your disease. So don't be hasty while doing your meditation.
2. Be regular; Meditation doesn't work if you're not regular, so try to be regular.
3. Be comfortable; You must at full ease while doing meditation, if you feel any kind of pain in your head or disturbance with your emotion then you should stop it right away. In that case, you should talk to someone who knows about meditation or practicing meditation for a very long time.
4. Focus on your feeling; When we meditate, our past feelings come up and try to mess with our heads, so you must ignore these feelings and focus on your positive feelings.
5. Don't try to suppress your feeling; A lot of people do this, they try to run away from their inner feelings, which is kind of impossible because you can't run from them. Also, you don't need to suppress them because suppressing your feelings is not going to work.
So you only need to accept your feelings whatever they are and tell yourself that I accept whatever happened to me in the past, and I am not afraid of it anymore. In this way, you can overcome your bad feelings of the past.
Acceptance is the only way to overcome any kind of fear that you have in your heart and mind. @Pushpender Yadav
Related; Why you should meditate during exams.
Every journey has ups and downs the same is with your meditation journey, you will have downfalls over time during your meditation journey because meditation is not something that is going to solve all your problems.
Your financial problems and other problems will remain as they are. The only thing that is going to change after your meditation journey is how you deal with those problems, nothing else.
So don't expect too much from meditation because expectations are only going to ruin your meditation experience. Instead, treat it as a self-care part of your life.