Meditation: The Ancient Art of Self-Discovery
"Your mind has a flood of questions.
There is but one teacher who can answer them.
Who is that teacher?
Your silence-loving heart."
Commonly Asked Questions
What is meditation? Meditation is self-discovery. Effective and natural, it simplifies our life and deepens our happiness. Meditation enables us to discover more about ourselves and what we can achieve from life. Meditation is the art of creating a calm and peaceful mind, allowing us to dive deep into the inner self. It is a totally natural experience, which enriches and fulfills our lives.
How do we meditate? With the help of a few simple techniques, we begin to discover our inner poise. When our mind is calm and quiet, we begin to feel new life and new inspiration growing inside us.
How long does it take? In the beginning, even a few minutes of daily practice shows positive results.Can anyone meditate? Yes, anyone can meditate. You simply need a yearning or a curiosity to find our more about yourself, to live a more peaceful life.
Regular Practice: When it comes to the saying that “practise makes perfect”, meditation is no exception. Similar to learning a musical instrument or becoming a good athlete, regular practice is essential if we hope to reap the wonderful benefits that meditation can offer. It is also good to approach meditation with the idea that it is something that develops with time – like fruit ripening on a tree.
Techniques: The techniques that we will be introducing you to are learning tools only. They are to help you quiet the mind, develop concentration and open your spiritual heart so that you can become aware of the deeper reality inside you. A time will come when you no longer consciously use these techniques at all. Your meditation will have become natural, spontaneous and guided from within.
Noise: You may find that you are easily distracted by the noise around you. Try to feel that these external sounds are unimportant. Do not wish things to be different in any way from what they are. In this way, there will be no resistance or frustration in your mind. In time you will be able to meditate anywhere, regardless of the noises and circumstances around you.
Simplicity: Simplicity is important in meditation. Try to feel that you are a little child – open, eager, fresh and pure. Imagine that you have no responsibilities or expectations when you sit to meditate. Feel that someone else is responsible for your meditation.
Do Not Worry: If you are having difficulty relaxing, quieting your mind or concentrating, do not worry. It does not mean you cannot meditate. These obstacles are normal when you first start out, especially in view of the fact that you are changing a life-time habit of identifying with the mind.
Never Give Up: No matter how difficult meditation may seem, no matter how restless your mind, you are making progress each time you practise. As in running, where each step takes you closer to your goal, each attempt in your meditation brings you closer to inner peace and happiness. Above all, have patience and faith that in time you will see the results.
How to Begin Meditation
Much of the writings in this section are taken from Sri Chinmoy's book titled Meditation: Man-Perfection in God-Satisfaction.
- How to begin meditation
- Some basic techniques
- The hour of meditation
- Mastering the essentials
- Question and answer index
A further selection of resources including online meditation courses and instructional videos, homestudy exercises, free meditation music downloads, as well as selected writings, questions and answers and poetry on meditation by Sri Chinmoy. More resources on meditation.