History has taught us a lot about the seven wonders of the world and the seven deadly sins. Today, we’re going to expand our horizons to discuss 7 meditation moments in history that are every bit as influential on the collective human experience.
Why People Meditate
People around the world have been meditating for thousands of years. Among the relaxation meditations practiced globally, our favorite at MP USA is, of course, Merpati Putih, because it provides an active meditative experience that enhances our lives in such a meaningful, long-lasting way. Other popular forms of meditation include Metta meditation, mindfulness meditation, kundalini yoga, and Zen meditation.
In whatever form it takes, meditating has many benefits. Meditation is important to our well being because it helps us make a connection between our physical world and a higher, intangible realm of being. It also helps us stay grounded. Here are some other reasons why people meditate:
- Helps us relax.
- Finding balance in the present.
- Improving physical strength, flexibility, and wellness.
- Increase our spiritual awareness.
- It helps us achieve a heightened state of mindfulness.
Meditation’s Influence on History
The names we’re about to drop should ring a bell. Have you heard of the Buddha? What about Confucius, Plato, and Aristotle? Each of these historical influencers made meditative practices part of their lives, and each of them likewise left a lasting legacy that continues to shape modern society.
Whether we’re talking philosophy, politics, or religion, many of the principles that influence our way of life first took shape in the Orient and ancient Greece. In fact, if you read Live and Dare’s History of Meditation, you’ll learn that Jewish meditation, Christian meditation, and the US transcendentalism movement all have roots in Eastern spirituality. Here are seven specific examples of meditation in the annals of history:
- Wall art in India dating from 5,000 to 3,500 BCE depicts yogis and sages practicing meditation.
- In the 6th century BCE Nepal, the Buddha began a personal journey of enlightenment that has since spread around the world.
- During the same era, Jainism, Taoism, and Confucianism were developed in India and China.
- In 327-325 BCE, the military conquests of Alexander the Great brought the meditative influence of the Orient to ancient Greece.
- Christian mysticism developed between the 10th and 14th centuries, resulting in a meditation called the Jesus Prayer.
- The mystics of Islam, known as the Sufis, developed Sufi meditation, with origins linking to Muhammad.
- Jewish meditation, or Kabbalah, gave rise in the 12th century and is based on deep, symbolic contemplation.
Each of these pivotal meditative journeys of the past played a significant role in leading us to the modern meditative movement. Although yoga and meditation weren’t introduced in the United States until the 20th century, they are here to stay!
Where to Meditate in the Here and Now
If learning about the 7 meditation moments in history has convinced you to create some meditation moments of your own, you’ve come to the right place. Beginning in September, MP USA will host Introduction to Energy classes every Wednesday where you’ll have the opportunity to make meditation an integral part of your life. Until then, we invite you to experience our existing programs – family martial arts, wealth of health fitness, and vibravision. Learn more by calling us today!