Buddhist Meditation is just one of many different kinds of meditation techniques. Buddhists are taught that there are five qualities that lead to more positive thoughts and experiences. If you are able to develop these five faculties you will enjoy more tranquility and peace in your soul and in your life.
The first is faith.
If you expand your faith your life has less room for doubts. Faith is difficult to understand. It requires you to suspend logical thinking and to believe in something you cannot completely understand, something you cannot see, hear, taste, touch or smell. The more you have faith in something the more secure you feel and the less fear and doubt will overtake you. Have faith in your meditation and the benefits you receive from doing it regularly.
The second is energy.
If you increase your energy you avoid laziness. Like faith, energy is also something you cannot see. You only see the lack of activity and it indicates that there is something not right. It takes energy to meditate, without it you will probably just fall asleep. In the quiet and stillness of Buddhist meditation if your energy is low you cannot put forth what is needed to complete the practice and success will be more difficult.
The third and most important quality is mindfulness.
If you increase mindfulness, you can see deeper into yourself and have more compassion for others. This quality is often called “awareness.” Without the ability to live in the moment, you cannot fully comprehend yourself or appreciate the blessings you have received. Your thoughts are always running into the future or digging up the past. The secret to Buddhist meditation begins with becoming aware of each moment and your connection to it…and then, finding the space in-between each breath, each thought. There is where you will find true peace.
The fourth faculty to strengthen is concentration.
If you increase your focus, you reduce distractions. In order to reach higher levels of meditation, you must manage distractions. It is not possible to eliminate all distractions whether they are outside of your body or inside, however you can diminish them to the point where they no longer affect you. Sometimes what you deem a distraction is the very thing you need to pay attention to. Recognize it, feel it, accept it and let it go. When you let go of the thoughts that are bothering you or using up your energy, you will be able to come back and refocus on your mantra or your breathing.
Wisdom is the fifth quality
…and when you strengthen the other four qualities you naturally become wiser. By controlling fears and doubts, harnessing your energy, being mindful of all that is you, and focusing on what’s important, you become wiser. Wisdom is more powerful than all other things except love. Wisdom knows many paths and will take you down each one. Wisdom is not given over to someone, it is earned. By practicing and improving these five faculties through meditation, you can attain liberation and truly transform your life.
It is important to note that throughout the meditation process you may notice disturbing images or have upsetting memories come into your mind, simply recognize them as part of your past and move back to your breathing or mantra.
If you wish to delve into these images or memories, do so with an experienced buddhist meditation guide.