Even though nobody can say when exactly the practice of meditation started, many scholars and documents say that it dates back to 5,000 years. Asia is known to be the continent of its origin.
The earliest written record of meditation is found in five thousand year old Hindu scriptures. It is known to have existed prior to Buddha.
It had followers all over the world. Meditation has been worked into almost every spiritual belief and religious practice in the world. It has many forms and a variety of different ways. Meditation is considered as one of the oldest and effective means of relaxing the mind, emotions and the soul. Now the practice is known as inward reflection or contemplation.
As it is derived from different cultures, the individual forms of meditation are associated with their own understanding and sets of practices that go with it. There are different physical postures that are to be used. No religion holds monopoly on practice of meditation. One need not convert to a particular religion to practice meditation. The history of meditation has inspired a lot of people to increase their level of consciousness and brought about health improvement.
Meditation is being followed by people who believe in holistic approach to healing. It has been used to help people stop smoking, quit drinking, reduce blood pressure among other things. Today, meditation is practiced all over the world and it has been recognized as a beneficial practice.
From the point of view of psychology and physiology, meditation can alter the state of consciousness to achieve spiritual enlightenment and lead to better cardiovascular health.
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