What is Meditation?
Meditation, like religion or
spirituality, is a word that today can be used to mean any number of
things, several of which have little to do with what meditation
really is. The word meditation may be used for prayer,
contemplation, visualization, affirmations, pranayama, mantra and so
on. So too the goal of meditation has taken on many meanings.
Meditation may be used for stress relief, for fulfilling one's
personal desires and any other limited objective.
Meditation (Dhyana) in the
true sense refers to the ability to unite the mind with the object
of our perception. Its goal is liberation from the dualistic
condition and unification with the Divine which is the ultimate
ground of Being in all objects.
Meditation occurs when we
empty our minds of extraneous thoughts and focus on the Divine
Presence that is the True Reality behind all things. This is the
main method of the Yoga of Knowledge (Jnana Yoga), but a similar
meditation merging into the Divine Beloved is the basis of the Yoga
of Devotion (Bhakti Yoga).