Meditation has always proved well-liked. Monks and yogis have enjoyed practicing it for thousands of years and students of the East, usually younger Western people seeking their way in life, have frequently practiced it too. Monks of the east and the west have studied meditation as a method of enlightenment, although most people associate Buddhist monks with the chief proponents of this type of study and introspection.
In order to meditate for a prolonged period of time, you need to be seated comfortably otherwise you might be distracted by soreness or numbness. In the East, people sit in the Lotus position from a very early age right up to the day they die, so meditating in the Lotus position, that is with crossed legs, is perfectly usual - most people sit crossed-legged each day of their lives, but we do not in the West.
Therefore, when a Westerner wants to meditate, it is often better to use a cushion or a mat, as you would whilst doing yoga or palates. A meditation cushion is meant to help you preserve the right posture, with a straight back, while keeping you comfortable. A meditation cushion may help novices at meditation get used to sitting for long periods of time without moving. It could be useful in helping to train children particularly.
The name frequently given to a meditation cushion is 'zafu'. It is usually handmade and attractive, but it has the role of lifting up the sitter so that the knees point downwards. This helps the sitter maintain a straight back, which yogis believe is essential to free the Kundalini which resides there.
Often this meditation cushion is credited with some status, so some people put it on a mat called a zabuton rather than place it directly on the floor.
Traditional meditation cushions are round and manufactured from cotton. There are many designs, but they are often quite ornate. The stuffing for the cushion is usually natural kapok, cotton batting or buckwheat hulls. All of these natural fibres offer a fairly stiff, yet comfortable support. Most meditation cushions have removable covers so that they can be washed without making the stuffing wet.
There is some variation in the diameter and thickness of these cushions so that the user can get one to suit his or her girth and weight, although most cushions of this nature will enhance anyone's experience of their meditation sessions. The diameters range from about twenty to roughly forty centimetres and are more or less twenty centimetres in thickness.
These meditation cushions are undeniably an invention for the Western meditator since an Easterner would have no requirement for them, but having said that they can make your meditation session a lot more comfortable.
Owen Jones, the writer of this article, writes on a variety of subjects, but is now involved with Marriott bedding
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