The Power of Silent Meditation
Meditation has been helping people find inner peace and balance for hundreds of years, and while there are many different types of meditative practices; silent meditation is one of the most unique and most difficult to master.
This guide will help you learn more and determine whether or not silent meditation is right for you.
What is a Silent Meditation?
As the name suggests, silent meditation, also known as Vipassana is one of the most ancient forms of meditation out there.
This form of meditation is an ancient practice originally taught by Buddhas which focuses on mindfulness of breathing and thoughts, feeling and actions.
The most effective way to practice silent meditation is to go on 7-10 day retreats. However, weekend or even daily retreats can also be effective.
When practicing silent meditation, you will need to do more than just 30 minutes at a time, like you would with regular meditation—because, when you think about it, all types of meditation don’t really require talking.
The Goal of Silent Meditation
The goal of silent meditation is to gain insight on the true nature of reality. The name Vipassana means to see things the way that they are and to essentially not let talking, noise or other forms of communicate to get in the way.
The goal is to learn acceptance, and to teach people to see and accept things as they are—instead of how we want them to be and it can have a powerful impact.
Silent Meditation Retreats
So, how exactly do you practice the silent part of silent meditation?
While you can practice silent meditation regularly, the most common way is to go on silent meditation retreats. These retreats are immersive and can be intense, but they are the best way to really get the hang of silent meditation and to really see what can happen when you commit to silence for days at a time.
During these retreats, you will meditate from 10-12 hours per day and not have any phone or internet connection, and entire days where you don’t communicate with another person, say a single word or spend time around anyone you know.
The Benefits of Silent Meditation
There are several ways to practice meditation as a way to reach your level of Zen. So, what are the benefits of silent meditation?
Here’s what it can teach you.
1. You Will Learn Patience
From the moment that you start practicing silent meditation—one of the first things that people realize is how difficult it can be to stay silent for extended periods of time.
It can be really difficult to go an entire day or several days without communicating with others and spending time with yourself in silent meditation. It will teach you to be patient, especially during your first experiences with this type of silent meditation.
2. You Will Learn to Listen To Yourself
When you go through something as challenging as a silent meditation retreat, you will quickly realize how much time you are spending alone with your own thoughts.
Even when you return to life as normal, chances are, you will start learning to listen to your thoughts even more, and learn to listen to yourself and be more in-tune with your thoughts.
3. You Will Develop Better Coping Techniques
The goal of silent meditation is to learn how to accept the world the way that it is. This is why the number one benefit that people tend to find from silent meditation retreats is a sense of acceptance.
This can help with virtually every part of your life—and more pertinently a way to accept tragedies and difficulties that come your way. It can be a powerful tool as you learn to cope with difficulties.
4. You Will Leave With More Confidence
Spending so much time alone with nothing but your own thoughts will give you a tremendous sense of confidence. It is one of the biggest changes you will see from your retreat, and something that can help you in your personal and professional life moving forward.
Overcoming The Challenges of Silent Meditation
Trying silent meditation for the first time can be very difficult. It can seem very unnatural to be silent for this long and you will likely face several challenges along the way.
- You will have to be alone with your own thoughts.
You will likely start to over-analyze yourself and your thoughts.
- You will have to stay still for a long time.
- You will need to let go of what is going on in your life outside of the retreat.
The best thing you can do is stick with it, knowing that when you complete your retreat, you are going to have a completely different view of the world. With this in mind, the best thing you can do is try to prepare yourself for the challenges you will likely face.
These are some of the most difficult challenges that people have when starting silent meditation, but they are challenges that will only help you come out stronger on the other side.
If you have been considering attending a silent meditation retreat, there is no better time than the present to give it a try. Now that you have a better idea of what you can expect from silent meditation, you can determine if this practice is the right practice for you.