Focused meditation involves the concentration of any of the five senses. For example, we can focus on something internal, like our breath, or we can bring in external experiences to help focus our attention, such as counting beads, listening to a bell, or staring at a candle flame.
Spiritual meditation is used in Eastern religions, such as Hinduism and Daoism, and in Christian faiths amongst others. The focus and reflection is on the silence around us as we seek a deeper connection with the Universe and its energy. It is not essential to follow a religion to be able to practice this form of meditation.
Loving-kindness meditation is also known as Metta meditation. Its goal is to cultivate an attitude of love and kindness toward everything, even a person’s enemies and sources of stress. While breathing deeply, we open our minds to receiving loving kindness. We then send messages of loving kindness to the world, to specific people, to our loved ones, and also to ourselves. The aim is to repeat the message many times, until we feel an overall sense of loving kindness.
“Chakra” in Sanskrit literally means wheel or cycle. The chakras are considered to be wheel-like energy centers that are not physically visible but belong to the subtle spiritual body. The 7 main chakras are situated along the spine from the sacrum at the bottom up to the crown at the top of the head. Each of the 7 key chakras has a specific function that corresponds with particular aspects of our human experience. In chakra meditation the chakras are focused on, cleared and activated aiding in a sense of well-being and energy release.
Also known as body scan meditation, progressive relaxation is a practice aimed at reducing tension in the body and promoting relaxation. This form of meditation can involve slowly tightening and relaxing our muscles throughout our body. In some cases, it may also encourage you to imagine a gentle wave flowing through your body to help release any tension.
Visualization meditation is a technique focused on enhancing feelings of relaxation, peace, and calmness by visualising positive scenes or images. With this practice, we’re encouraged to imagine the scene vividly using all five senses including as much detail as possible.