You might be wondering, what exactly is meditation? The origins of meditation date back 50,000 years ago, when the practice developed as a ritual used in a variety of religions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Today, meditation is still used for religious worship, but has also developed into a secular practice used for wellness and mindfulness.
Here are some terms of eastern foundation that play a significant role in the practice of meditation: karma, swadharma, dharma, buddhi, samskara, vasana, kriya, viveka, vairagya and sannyasa. Karma is the summation of an individual’s actions—in both their own life and in previous states of existence—that act as a deciding factor in their future. Swadharma is one’s own unique role/talent in life, and dharma is a moral code that governs all things. Buddhi has to do with intellectual faculty, which is further developed in samskara and vasana—two terms that describe how our individual ideas come together to form impressions, dispositions, hopes and wishes. Kriya is a type of meditation that focuses on breathing patterns and viveka is a practice of deciphering between the real and unreal, the eternal and temporary. Lastly, vairagya and sannyasa are vital components to detach from materialism. There are many other terms you may encounter while practicing meditation, but these terms will suffice as a general introduction to the practice.