Did you know that the earliest evidence of meditation is a wall art that dates back between 5000 to 3500 BCE? Figures depicting people sitting with their legs crossed and their arms resting on their knees are etched on a wall somewhere in the Indus Valley.
Needless to say, meditation is ancient. It began eons away from the century we are all in at present.
Meditation back then may be a whole lot different from the meditation of today. Remember the old quote that says, “Change is the only constant in life”? It’s true and it exempts no one and nothing, not even meditation — the powerful and spiritual age-old practice for the mind.
Over the years, meditation has evolved. It has crossed continents, starting from the East moving to the West. More and more techniques developed as the practice spread across the globe and survived the centuries.
Unfortunately, as more and more people learnt about meditation, it’s true meaning somehow got buried. Misconceptions form around it like a haze only persistent seekers can cut through.
For the benefit of new learners as well as those who are confused, here’s the true meaning of meditation negating all it’s most common misconceptions:
Meditation is NOT religious
This statement isn’t sacrilegious. It’s a simple declaration of what meditation is. Even though meditation primarily stemmed from Buddhism and is still deeply influenced by it, meditation welcomes everyone, and disregards all beliefs and religion. It doesn’t matter who your Supreme Being is or if you have one at all. If you want to meditate, you can. There’s no risk of running into theological or devotional conflicts.
Meditation is NOT concentration or a form of mental effort
In fact, it’s the opposite. Meditation is about letting go of distractions, calming the mind, and putting your thoughts at rest. During meditation, the mind enters a state of heightened consciousness that brings clarity and peace.
Meditation is NOT hypnotism or losing control
On the contrary, meditation gives us control. It helps the mind stay on track and develop resilience against negativities, stress and confusion. As a result, it becomes alert and stable, enabling us to face challenges with a positive perspective and sound judgement.
All in all, meditation is an exercise for the mind. It’s a tool for anchoring oneself to the present and achieving inner peace. It’s about telling your brain to pause, be aware, and reconnect with the present. Most importantly, it’s free and open to anyone, readily doling gifts out to those who are patient enough to learn it.