What is Buddhist Meditation?
For Buddhists, the mind and body is a single entity. The main purpose of this is to avoid ‘duality’. The mind and body should not be treated as two separate entities. Instead, they should be one. The purpose of Buddhist meditation is not intended to take a person to a hypnotic state or to get a supernatural feeling.
In general, meditation can be defined as a way of taking complete control of the mind so that it becomes more focused and peaceful. This in turn makes the meditator more aware of himself and the surroundings. The main purpose of meditation is to prevent the mind from wandering aimlessly with a stream of thoughts. Buddhist meditation helps a person have control over his mind.
Buddhist meditation has a number of methods which have been used since a long time. A person can meditate on his own or be a part of a group. People can meditate by being part of a sesshin (an extended and intense form of meditation) or one can meditate along with others in a zendo (a meditation hall). The experience of meditating in a group is particularly enriching for some as it reminds them that they are a part of a bigger and larger Buddhist community.
Detachment and Concentration in Buddhist Meditation
Buddhist meditation stresses upon detachment, concentration and objectivity. This enables a person to think clearly without any bias. Detachment from the worldly pleasures and jealousy, hate, anger, pride etc. Brings a person at peace with himself and his surroundings. With meditation, the mind gets purified and the person takes a greater delight in benevolence, generosity and wisdom.
The secret to success that many people conveniently overlook is ‘concentration’. You need concentration to succeed in any undertaking. The mind is very hard to control. It wanders around shifting in and out of various thoughts. It can be compared to a wild, untamed horse. But once a person gets a grip over his/her mind, it can be the most powerful instrument.
The benefits of practicing Buddhist meditation are innumerable. You could locate a meditation center that’s close to where you reside. You could also find a lot of information and videos on ways to get started with Buddhist meditation on the Internet.