Today, meditation has been recognized as a practice which is essential for good mental health. This is indeed correct. There are so many benefits of meditation that it shall be difficult to enlist all the benefits of meditation in one go. In this piece I shall try to unravel the ontology of meditation, which is perhaps overlooked; given the many tangible benefits of meditation, as understood in the field of general health and medical care. Meditation, as a practice, far exceeds the spectrum of goodness and welfare. Sadly the world is only interested in immediate benefits and negligent about the far-reaching goals of meditation, as a practice.
Meditation is the inherent aspect of an awakened being. Meditation as a routine or practice is the starting point. The maturity of meditation is absorption. Santana Dharma and Buddhism, an offshoot of Sanatana Dharma, propound the practice of meditation, in conjunction with 10 fundamental principles of practice known as Yamas and Niyamas. Meditation, if looked, only from a limited view point of mental health, is not very effective. This is a fact. Using meditation only with the intention of good all-round health, is like using an aircraft, to travel by road. Although this travel is possible, it is not sustainable and even foolish in many ways. The scope of meditation is huge and one should use meditation for the purpose, that it is meant for, as enunciated in the Dharma Shastras and Pali scriptures.
The mental faculties of humans, is advanced, when compared to other forms of life and the goal of meditation is to tune the mental world to a higher domain, normally inaccessible through any other means. When the mental tuning happens; the psychology, physiology and the whole human system, gets tuned to the higher domain, whereby, higher energies become easily accessible. This accessibility then transmutes itself into a pathway, which the being uses to walk through, to the spiritual domain. Great Masters have done this, through the tool called meditation. If meditation is performed under the auspices of a good teacher, who has this tuning, one shall be able to break away from the limited conception of body-mind and shall be able to enter that domain, where the spiritual law far supersede material laws, although the being is very much a part of the physical world. This mystical break-through is the very purpose of meditation. If one is sincere enough, in one’s intention, one shall be guided to this form of meditation by Grace alone.
Meditation, is the process through which one is able to align all of one’s attention towards the unification of the life-energies, which are currently available, although, in a dissipated format in and around the body. The integration of this energy is possible through the process of meditation.Meditation can have different forms. It can be of the form of focusing on the breath, in Buddhist processes like Anapanasati, Vipassana or like in Anulom Vilom or Bhastrika, which are forms of Pranayama Yogic practices. Meditation may be, focusing on words like “AUM” or “RAM” and so on. Whatever the practice, the goal is to get access to the higher dimension. If there are any other intentions behind the practice, meditation can achieve it, although the effects of meditation, for having used it for a lesser purpose, shall be short-lived. A short-term approach, shall distance one from the process of meditation altogether. Meditation, should be used for purely spiritual purposes. There are other key considerations if one is to board the vehicle called Meditation.
The practice of meditation, is always done with pure intention, if it is intended to serve spiritual purposes. One needs to get rid of all materially motivated intentions such as , trying to get rich through meditation, getting occult powers for using it, for or against anyone etc. One should refrain from all materially motivated mind-sets. Meditation yields immaculate results, if the mind is rid of all motivations. If one is interested in Knowing the Supreme Being, the True Purpose of existence and so on, which are spiritual goals; meditation shall work best. The purer the intentions, the better. Meditation, as a practice, seldom lets down sincere seekers. Only people with shallow minds, will find that meditation is taking them nowhere and will soon abandon their meditation practice. The process of meditation, is to be understood as a “Person”, a being, rather than a technique, who knows your deepest intention. Meditation is a carrier to the spiritual world, something like a spacious space-ship. This should be the mood when one takes up the practice of meditation.
When one gets committed to meditation in moods similar to those mentioned above, meditation shall start carrying you to newer world of thoughts and realizations. Things, events, circumstances, people, with whom you had no earlier interaction or knowledge about, shall start manifesting in your life. Your life’s true vision shall start manifesting before you. One may not necessarily find it odd or out of place, at the initial stages; but through continued practice, one will observe that the quality of life has been drastically enhanced. Lower habits shall automatically start getting replaced with healthier, genuine ones. Sleep patterns will start getting re-oriented. Interests and occupations may start changing. Some relationships will suddenly break, some newer ones will start emerging. One’s whole world will start getting re-oriented. Interest in Spirituality will start picking up. One shall automatically start going deep into the “How and Why of things”. The theory of Karma shall start getting interesting. One will start looking deeper into the smallest happenings and even start understanding the way in which nature works. Realizations of life and after-life will unravel within your consciousness, even without reading a single book about it. Doubts of the dumped past, will suddenly appear past, on the screen of consciousness and shall stand cleared to the last dot, without any brain-racking. The knotty kinks of life shall lie open just as the sky lies open to day. Problems shall continue to exist and yet their size will be the size of a mustard seed in front of a mountain. There will be drastic change in one’s lifestyle and preferences and yet, joy alone. shall be one’s language of communication.
It would be an understatement to call, all of the above as benefits of meditation. It would be rather appropriate to call them, the realm of meditation. How can these things be classified as benefits? The word benefit, means that somewhere, I am the same and some things around me change for a short-time. The experience of meditation is far from this. It is a transformation of consciousness; a journey from the temporary into the domain of permanence.