Meditation Monday: Vedic Meditation – The Ancient Technique

Vedic Meditation – The Ancient Technique

All the Basics:

Vedic Meditation is meditation technique descending from the Hindu Vedas. The purpose of the meditation is a deep rest to purify and re-balance. The meditation allows the individual to reduce stress and anxiety, increase awareness and clarity of mind, improve physical well-being and slow the aging process.

This meditation technique is practiced for 20 minutes twice a day while sitting comfortably with the eyes closed. It brings about a state of deep relaxation, which is said to bring the meditator into a deeper rest than sleep.

How to Perform the Meditation:

 To begin the Vedic Meditation, you sit comfortably in a chair with your back supported and your eyes closed. You allow your mind to settle down to increasingly quieter levels of consciousness by utilizing the sound of a mantra. There is no focusing, concentrating or contemplating involved. There's no need to try to control the mind in any way (Vedic Path Meditation). 

Mantra, Sound or Visualization:

Vedic Meditation relies on the repetition of a mantra, usually given to you by a teacher as you begin practice. While repeating the mantra, practice soukshma - "innocence, faint, and effortlessness." Allow your mind to transcend through the practice.

The word "mantra" comes from the Sanskrit words "mana" for mind and "tra" for vehicle or instrument. It's literally a vehicle for awareness. Thousands of mantras exist, all for different purposes, which the names have absolutely no meaning. They're essentially just sounds. 

[Related: Mantras 101: Sacred Sound, Meaning & Myth]

Origin + History:  

Vedic Meditation's origins date back to about 5,000 years ago in India by and for what they called “householders," or normal people involved in everyday life. The come from the Hindu Vedas, one of the earliest sources of mediation literature. The ancient Rishis realized that meditation was an effective means to help develop consciousness and the inner workings of the mind, body and being. 

 Photo Cred: Dominique Amendola