Using Music to Support Mindfulness

by Donna Torney on October 24, 2015 · 0 comments

Your formal meditation practice doesn’t have to be practiced in silence.  In fact music can be a great object of concentration. You can use any kind of music to support your practice.   but keep in mind that when you’re meditating, you are aiming for a calm and alert state of mind.

When using music to meditate, it’s important to chose music that will relax you, but not put you to sleep. True meditation requires that you stay awake.  The brain waves of a sleeping person and that of a meditating person are much different.

You’ll know you are in a meditative state when you find yourself relaxed, yet mentally engaged with the piece of music you are listening to.

Try to strike a balance with music that is soothing and gentle, but will not have you snoring.  Many classical pieces are appropriate for attaining this middle ground of a calm and alert mind, as are many new-age performers.

Traditional chants and chimes are also a good choice when experimenting with musical meditation.  Chanting and chimes or bells have been used for centuries by many different cultures to induce a meditative state.  It may take some experimenting to find a recording that is right for you.  If you find that the chanting or chiming is actually getting on your nerves, try a type of music you are more familiar with.

A piece of music you have always loved might be just right when you are starting out with music and meditation.  Consider listening to the music with “beginners mind,” a phrase used by mindfulness meditation practitioners that describes approaching experience with a fresh perspective.  Listen to the piece as if it’s the first time you ever heard it, focusing in on the beat of a drum, or the tone of a violin.  Listening to music in this way will put you in a true meditative state.

You’ll know you are in a meditative state when you find yourself relaxed, yet mentally engaged with the piece of music you are listening to.  With regular practice, meditating with music can help you experience expanded periods of calm and increased concentration.  Then again you might find silence is the best music for your ears.

Do you prefer silence or some kind of background noise when you meditate.  Join in on the conversation at mindful hub.

We wish you twenty minutes of mindfulness every day!

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