Okay, and we're continuing our journey on explaining what is meditation. And in this video, let's compare guided meditation to single pointed meditation. As I said in the introduction, there's so many different types of meditation. But this is a really good spectrum to compare all of these different meditations because they all lie somewhere on this spectrum of either being more towards a single pointed meditation or more towards a guided meditation. Now, when I say single meditation, this is perhaps the purest form of meditation there is it is trying to concentrate on one single object. Now that object could for example, be your breath or it could be a candle flame.
In my case, when I went on retreat, I meditated for months at a time on a blue flower. So that was my object of meditation. And it's trying to bring your mind to rest on a single object. Now, this is extremely difficult to do it is kind of a penultimate ambition or state that you're trying to get to as a meditator. But it is nevertheless the one which requires the most technique and the hardest to do. Now, on the other end of the spectrum is guided meditation, where you're not doing any of the work yourself, you're just listening to the facilitator guide you in a meditation and they might be saying things.
Imagine yourself walking along with beautiful beach, or walking in a forest and the calm comes and makes you feel at home and you feel peaceful. And so you take those Sort of suggestions. Now the ultimate expression of this, of course, is hypnosis. Hypnosis is the ultimate sort of guided meditation where you almost give up control of your mind to the story that the hypnotist is saying. And then the hypnotist sews in seeds into your unconscious mind about what it is you want to achieve whether you want to quit smoking or whatever it is. So with guided meditation, it is far easier.
And there's easier for two reasons. First of all, it is other powers out there doing the work for your mind to follow. And then the second reason is you're following a story. Now the mind loves stories. It likes to move, it likes to move from one concept to another concept and it so that it doesn't get bored. Now compare this to single pointed meditation, where you're trying to focus on one object and no matter what object you choose, you can choose something really interesting if you like, within minutes, the mind is going to start to get bored and go, you know, what am I just concentrating on this single object for, and it will want to move and it will want to get distracted.
So, it's much easier to have a guided meditation I because other people are doing it and be because your mind is having a story and you're able to stay with the story. Now, all other meditations are somewhere on this line. For example, in this meditation course, we'll do contemplated meditations, where I'll give you a subject to think about, like for example, you know, the gratefulness of being alive in this great life or the impermanence of different things. And so, you will be given a subject which you can then think about, so it's a moving subject, but then I'll remain silent and you'll It'll be time for you to contemplate on stay on that subject for five or 10 minutes, however long the meditation goes for. So this is sort of somewhere in between a guided meditation and a single pointed meditation, meditation on a mantra, or a prayer, for example.
It is it is moving somewhat, but it's also like a mantra might only be six words. So it has some amount of activity where you've got to concentrate on the sound. So it's a little bit interesting. It keeps the mind focused somewhat, but it's more towards the single pointed end of the meditation. So this is really important. Of course, both are useful.
All of the wisdom and open hearted meditations are more guided meditations and therefore easier to think about. Whereas the technique, the skills I'll be teaching you in technique and more towards getting to single pointed meditation and they are A lot more boring. And let me tell you a little story because I started out by teaching technique when I heard these techniques, improve my meditation practice no and and so I went out and taught it. And I advertised in a local community where I live in the newspaper in the newspaper, and we got about 20 people to start with. And I started teaching these technique, teachings only, no sort of meditations on wisdom, open heartedness. And my class size started about 20, then went to that 15, then about eight, and then four, and then two.
And I was like, What's going on here? Why is everyone turning it off? And the truth was, it was very dry and very boring for people who aren't specifically looking for the detailed knowledge of meditation. But it is, however, incredibly useful to know that the proper technique of meditating so that you can apply that to your meditation practice. And you'll only ever get better if you know those proper techniques. So what I'm going to be doing in this course is I'll give you some technique, and then some guided meditations and some contemplated meditations.
And then in other areas, you can even access hypnosis inductions as well. And you need to try all different styles and, you know, shake them up a bit. So one day you will do a more single pointed meditation just and technique and other way other times you do a guided meditation. So I hope that explains a little bit more about what meditation is and the different styles of meditation. And we're going to keep going we're going to talk about next what meditation is not