Today’s post comes from Ronnie Biemans, MA, LCPC, Counselor and Wellness Coach. You can learn more about Ronnie and her services on her Website: http://www.ronniebiemans-ma-lcpc.com/.
There are essentially two forms of meditation: insight and concentration.
Mindfulness is considered insight meditation since it brings full attention to the body and mind in the present moment without trying to alter or manipulate the experience. Through this experience a greater self awareness arises. The task is simply to observe.
In contrast, with concentration meditation, the focus is on concepts, imagery or a mantra. A sense of tranquility is one of the benefits of the mind being deeply absorbed with the meditation object.
The distinguishing difference is that with concentration meditation, you become one with the object of focus, leading to greater meditative absorption,whereas with insight meditation you begin to see the ever changing nature of body and mind and the difficulties that can arise from fixed, self limiting definitions of who you think you are.
These insights deepen your understanding of what fuels your stress and suffering and leads to greater balance and peace.
Sources: A Mindfulness-based stress reduction workbook by Bob Stahl, PhD and Elisha Goldstein, PhD, The Mindfulness Solution by Ronald Siegel, PsyD, five good minutes: 100 morning practices to help you stay calm & focused all day long by Jeffrey Brantley, MD and Wendy Millstine