Can You Meditate With Music?
There are numerous forms of meditation, each with their own nuances that set them apart from the others. So, it’s not surprising that the effectiveness of each type is widely debated, given how many different kinds are practiced around the world. To some, transcendental meditation would never work, while others would say the same about mindfulness meditation.
One area that often gets meditative practitioners talking is whether you can meditate with music. Some adamantly insist on it, and others passionately dislike it. In this article, we look at the advantages of both meditating with music and without.
Advantages To Meditating With Music
Not all these advantages will apply to everyone’s experience, as meditation is a highly personal activity. Some like to meditate on their own, while some like to be a part of a meditation course or group. So, the following benefits are not always going to be had by everyone.
Meditation with music can help some people focus. They say that silence causes their brains to go into overdrive, and all their stresses and strains to come racing through their minds. So, they find that by playing music, they’re able to let those thoughts go. That’s why people often meditate while walking to music, as it helps them focus on their surroundings without worrying about to-do lists or life’s stresses.
Supports Focusing Attention
Music can assist in meditation and help to focus your attention. Focusing attention is the most essential aspect of meditation, and once it occurs, the meditator will feel more rested. A well-rested person will find it easier to cope with the world on a day-to-day basis, as stressful events no longer have as strong of an impact.
Music is one of those things that, for some people, has the power to change a mood immediately. Depending on the song, a person’s mood can lift almost instantly. Or, if it’s a slower, calmer song, it can help that person relax too. So, for some, meditating with music can actually enhance their sessions, or re-adjust their internal state towards a more positive one.
Many meditative practices, particularly mindfulness meditation, call for a person’s breathing to be focused and slowed. Slowing the breath can help a person calm down and reduce any anxiety they are feeling. Music can help a person slow their breathing - either by breathing in time with the tune or bringing them into the moment.
Why Meditation In Silence Can Be Effective
Not everyone is a big advocate of meditation with music. Many will use the following reasons to support their argument that silence is preferable.
To some, meditation must be conducted with absolutely no distractions. Naysayers will argue that music is highly distracting, and as a result, any mindfulness that comes from that session is not as good as it could have been. They will argue that it is only in silence that people can reach a true state of calm and balance.
Allows You To Feel How You Are Truly Feeling
To those who believe meditation should occur in silence, music is a highly emotive distraction. They argue that music may artificially inflate a practitioner's mood, preventing them from experiencing how they truly feel. Silence can allow some people to better zone in on their thoughts and actively work to develop a more focused awareness.
Meditation With Music: Key Takeaways
The debate around meditation with music highlights just how much meditation is a personal practice. For some, music will make the difference between an average meditation and a highly beneficial one. To others, using music may ruin their whole session and interfere with what to think about when meditating.
Ultimately, meditation works best when you gain all you need from it. If that means you need to use music to help you focus, then use it. If it acts as a distraction and prevents you from feeling your genuine emotions, then go ahead and meditate in silence!
Above all, whatever you do, make sure that you come out of the meditation rested and more capable of facing modern life’s pressures - whatever form they take for you.
For further reading, check out our other articles like 3 Habits to Turn Your Inner Critic into a Wise Advocate.