Meditation is a mode of transforming one’s mind. It incorporates techniques in concentration, thinking positively, mindfulness, emotional healthy and relaxation of the body and mind. It helps one to observe the negative habits of the mind and deconstruct them to create room for positive ones.
There are different forms of meditation that summed up provide physiological, psychological, and spiritual benefits.
Physiologically, when one meditates, they can benefit in different ways: it increases blood flow, slows the heart rate and decreases the respiratory rate; it reduces anxiety attacks,muscle tension and cholesterol levels; it enhances energy, immune system and weight loss.
Psychologically, meditation: builds self-esteem, develops intuition, increases emotional stability and creativity, helps combat phobias, purifies character and develops will power. Lastly, meditation spiritually: provides peace of mind, helps one discover purpose, helps learn forgiveness, heightens sense of unity, and helps create a deeper relationship with God.
Meditation from a Christian’s Perspective
The main aim of meditation, spiritually, is to enable one to experience divine contemplation: acknowledging the presence of God. Christian meditation gets its roots from many references in the Bible like: “May my meditation be pleasing to him, as I rejoice in the Lord” (Psalm 104:34). Christian meditation aims to fill ones mind with
thoughts related to Bible and Christian veneration, unlike non-Christian meditation that concentrates on techniques to disengage the mind.
There are several times during the day that are best for meditating on God and his word: when we wake up in the morning and in the evening before retiring. Daniel in the Bible sought God at least three times per day. This enabled Him to be in constant communication with the Lord. To meditate, find a quiet, serene place to meditate on God away from all distraction. There are various techniques of Christian meditation:
1. Meditating on God’s Word. This technique involves selecting a biblical scripture or passage and then reflecting on it all day. During the reflections one should focus on how these scriptures affect and reflect on their lives. One should also seek to mold their actions to reflect these passages. During the meditation one should seek God’s guidance in bringing the word alive not only in their minds but in their hearts and soul as well.
2. Using a sacred word or ‘mantra’. This method of meditation involves one choosing a sacred phrase (mantra) that they can focus on. Examples of mantra include: ‘Jesus is my savior, ‘the Lord is my strength’, ‘I walk by faith’ and so on. One is then to fully concentrate on their mantra and breathing while meditating.
3. Guided Meditations. This technique is strongly advised for beginners, It involves pre-recorded meditations on a CD or DVD. These Guided-Meditations usually consist of relaxation exercises, biblical stories and scriptural narrative that help one to learn how to focus on God’s word during meditation.
The Bible tells us that during meditation: “Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right,
whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things” (Philippians 4:8).