Meditation is a technique used to quiet the mind and calm the body. The technique is not only used as a spiritual exercise, but also to relieve common stress and promote health. Though meditation is not difficult to learn, it does require guidance and practice. A variety of meditation centers, meditation classes, and meditation retreat centers are available for those who wish to master the techniques and bring serenity and relaxation into their lives.
Anyone can learn to meditate. The technique simply requires a desire to turn down the inner noise that builds up during everyday life and a little time in a quiet area of your home. Many people use meditation CDs, videos, online mediums, and other aids to learn the essential techniques of meditation. However, others find it helpful to join a meditation class with an experienced teacher. In fact, meditation groups add intensity to the meditation experience. You may find that the guided instructions in these classes make it easier to quiet your churning thoughts.
A meditation center is generally defined as a place where people can go to learn and practice meditation with other like-minded individuals. However, In the U.S, as meditation becomes a more widespread phenomenon, we are now seeing many different types of meditation centers. Many are secular-based such as Buddhist churches, temples, or monasteries, but many are also non-secular such as community centers, yoga studios, health centers, fitness centers, hospitals, school and universities. Most of these centers offer meditation services to the public-and now with the internet, it is much easier to find them.
Most meditation centers offer meditation classes, program, and even meditation retreats. People interested in learning and practicing meditation can usually find a number of classes in their communities. These classes may be offered freely, on a donation (Dana) basis, or for a fee depending on the center’s tradition. Many yoga centers may offer meditation classes as part of the overall experience. Meditation classes may range from short 30 minute sessions to as long as multiple day programs.
Once you have learned the fundamental techniques of meditation, you may find that you want to extend your practice to include a group that meditates regularly. A number of different organizations are available that gather at various times throughout the week to increases their meditative power in a group. Some of these groups are associated with religious organizations. Others are purely secular and have no religious requirement. Groups are either organized by experienced meditation teachers, members of a meditation center, or by meditation enthusiasts seeking to meditate with other like-minded individuals. Many people find it convenient to use social media or online services to coordinate and promote their meditation groups. Groups may be held at a predefined location such as a rented office space, a private residence, a meditation center, a studio, or even a classroom. Generally, a quite room with sufficient space is all one needs to organize a meditation group.
Meditation Retreat Centers
Many people who wish to develop their meditation practice or who have been meditating for a while travel to meditation centers to focus on their meditation practice and enjoy a concentrated period of relaxation and mental focus. These meditation retreat centers offer a variety of specialized courses that include meditation practice, along with career focus, physical health programs and spiritual exploration. There are meditation retreat centers all across the U.S. In fact, some meditation centers are also meditation retreat centers. Like meditation centers, there are also a wide variety of meditation retreat centers both secular and non-secular.