Meditation is becoming an ever-increasing force in Western culture, and it will only become more popular as more people learn of its benefits. Because of the diversity of meditation practices available today, it can be difficult to understand them all and know which one to choose. Every person is a unique individual, at a unique point in his or her life, and individual guidance can help in finding the best practice for you.
At Joyful Path, we offer instruction on many types of meditation ranging from Secular Mindfulness, to meditations that cultivate spiritual qualities such as Loving Kindness to deeper transformative meditations that are based in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. Most popular forms of meditation can help one achieve a healthier lifestyle with lowered stress, a more positive outlook on life, and an improved ability to face challenges with balance and clarity.
Classes, workshops and group meditations are available to help you begin or progress with a meditation practice. Check our calendar to see the schedule of classes and meditation times. We also provide one-on-one sessions when more personalized guidance is desired. Below are some sample meditations to help you get started.
Three Fundamentals Meditation
You can practice the three fundamentals as a meditation while you are seated, or as a informal practice to come back to yourself throughout the day — in the grocery line, at work, sitting at the table and many other places.
Mindfulness Meditation is a secular, research-based form of meditation derived from a 2,500 year old Buddhist practice. Jon Kabat Zin defines mindfulness as moment-to-moment non-judgmental awareness. According to recent research, there are five key ways that mindfulness training increases physical and mental health:
- It strengthens immune system and physiological responses to stress and negative emotions.
- It improves social relationships with family and strangers.
- It reduces stress, depression, and anxiety and increases well-being and happiness.
- It increases openness to experience, conscientiousness, and agreeableness and reduces negative associations with neuroticism.
- It leads to greater psychological mindfulness.
Mindfulness of Breath
Loving Kindness Meditation
Practicing Loving Kindness (Metta) meditation has been shown to improve a person’s mind state and produce lasting and profound emotional, physical, and spiritual benefits. Through scientific research, Metta meditation has been shown to decrease migraines, chronic pain, and symptoms of depression and PTSD. It increases compassion and feelings of empathy, as well as decreases criticism of self and others. It can even positively affect the aging process and makes you more resilient to stress. In loving kindness meditations, a meditator actively generates a specific state of mind which includes the caring for the well being of another living being. There are many styles of Loving Kindness meditation. We include two here for you to try.
Transformative meditations are special in that they target the obstacles to happiness and health at a deep, root level. Rapid personal change often results when doing this type of meditation. Because of their power, it is especially important to have personal guidance from a meditation instructor when doing a transformative practice. Transformative meditations start with refuge and generating the mind of compassion and end with dedication. The meditations usually have more than one component and include mindfulness, generating states of mind such as loving kindness and compassion, visualization and chanting.