Beginning a Meaningful Meditation Journey

We practice meditation for the many benefits it brings to our lives such as a calmer mind, enhanced mental clarity, and improved physical wellbeing. But these are just the beginning of the infinite possibilities that meditation can offer you to change the state of your mind toward the positive and live a more fulfilling life. Regular meditation practice not only can help you calm your mind and lower your blood pressure, but it can help you to achieve an inner, spiritual transformation that is lasting and invites true happiness into your life. Meditation as a spiritual transformation within is the less known but most meaningful and empowering purpose of meditation, which author and spiritual teacher Ryuho Okawa would like more people to discover and experience.

When we practice meditation, we may sometimes find it difficult to maintain the serenity of mind that it helps us achieve. Or we may notice the same negative thoughts cropping up the next day or at a later time when we find ourselves facing similar circumstances, and this can make us feel frustrated for lacking the progress we want to make in our spiritual journey.

The reason the same recurring thoughts and patterns of thinking well up is often because we need to delve deeper into our mind and reach within our soul to fully overcome the root cause of our negative thoughts. By incorporating a couple of key mental attitudes in your meditation practice, or even simply by being more mindful of them throughout your day-to-day life, you can empower your own mind to achieve longer-lasting inner calm and happiness.

  1. Examine your thoughts and feelings through self-reflection
    An agitated, distressed, or busy mind is the outcome of a real cause lying somewhere in the deeper recesses of the mind that is producing it. Practicing self-reflection in your meditation allows you to go below the surface level of your mind and access the subconscious, more spiritual levels of your true self, and come face-to-face with your false self that is creating negative thought patterns. These contemplation tips for self-reflection can help us encourage deeper understanding of our own thought patterns, which is the key to recognizing and overcoming the thoughts that don’t serve you.
    • Identify the nature of your negative thought or emotion
      What is the negative thought or emotion saying and what is its nature? Is it anger, resentment, envy, lack of self-confidence, fear, or something else?
    • Understand and examine your reason for feeling this way
      Look back at the situation and the people involved, and examine what caused you to feel this way. Consider the external events that led you to having this feeling or thought, why you reacted this way to them, and what underlying desire or wish is creating this reaction. Is it the desire to protect yourself from getting hurt again, a fear of facing failure or rejection, the desire for something you cannot have, the desire for control, or something else?
    • Consider your thought patterns from different perspectives – of that of others and of heavenly beings
      Examine your thoughts and feelings from different points of view, such as the other people who are involved in making you feel this way and the holy beings who are watching over you to guide you from heaven. By putting yourself in the other person’s shoes or thinking about how the divine beings would feel about your experiences, you’ll be able to rationally see where you’ve been mistaken and what you need to do to overcome it.
  2. Contemplate on the values of heavenly beings in your meditation and day-to-day life
    In the midst of distress, agitation, or other forms of human suffering, we often forget about the good, beauty, truth, and inner strength that our true selves and this world possess and this leads to negative thoughts and perspectives. Contemplating the heart of heaven, the source of every goodness that exists in this world and within your true self, such as happiness, love, compassion, courage, righteousness, and abundance, and living more consciously of the thoughts and wishes of divine beings is a valuable spiritual practice that lets us see ourselves and this world in a new light. Shifting our mind’s eye in this way leads to impactful, long-term changes to your mind and life.

To read more about practicing meditation in meaningful and empowering ways that you may not have experienced before, read The Miracles of Meditation: Opening Your Life to Peace, Joy, and the Power Within.

The Miracle of Meditation

Opening Your Life to Peace, Joy and the Power Within

This book introduces various types of meditation, including calming meditation, purposeful meditation, reading meditation, reflective meditation, and meditation to communicate with heaven.

Related: Finding the Miracle of Meditation, Inner Peace and Happiness, 4 Steps to Declutter Your Mind and Find Peace