Top 5 Meditation Books: Your Path to Inner Peace

Breathe in, breathe out: Best books to guide you in your meditation journey

We are increasingly becoming aware of how meditation yields enormous benefits in our stressful lives. But we still find it difficult to plunge into regular meditative practice. A book can prove to be a surprisingly good companion in navigating this rewarding journey.

Modern living takes a massive toll on the humans of today. Many among us, in a bid to restore some of that calm, are now moving towards meditative practice. With an ever wandering mind, increased stress and anxiety, most of us have either started meditation or are contemplating it. However, easy as it may sound, practicing meditation every day can be really challenging to sustain in the long run.

When you get into meditation, its usually your own mind which challenges you the most. As much as you try to remain in the moment and focus on your breathing, you tend to wander away at every possible thought. Some of these thoughts are unpleasant, generating even more stress and anxiety.

While it is frustrating to not be able to rest your mind and slip into your meditative practice with ease, we suggest you do not give up yet. As a beginner, you may not know the ‘how and why’ of meditation. It is here that an appropriate book on the subject helps immensely in doing the practice correctly, proving to be a guiding light.

Here we discuss about 5 books that can prove to be excellent companions in overcoming the challenges faced during meditation. They are sure to help you stride forward in this wonderful practice.

‘Mindfulness in Plain English’ by Bhante Henepola Gunaratana‌

This book is ‘a masterpiece’. If you are a beginner, this is a must read since it covers everything about meditation, especially ‘why to do it’ and ‘how to do it’ in everyday life. Bhante Gunaratana, a renowned meditation master and a Sri Lankan monk, busts myths, opens doors to realities and chronicles the benefits of meditation in this book, albeit step by step.

He also describes the practice of mindfulness in detail. The book is remarkable and is written in a clear and lucid tone. It can be considered a practical guide to begin one’s meditation practice. Recommended by scientists and teachers as well, this gem on meditation introduces the beginners to mindfulness, kindness and living with peace. If you have decided to make meditation an essential part of your routine, ‘Mindfulness in Plain English’ may turn out to be your guiding light.

‘The Miracle of Mindfulness: An Introduction to the Practice of Meditation’ by Thich Nhat Hanh‌‌

Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese Buddhist Zen master revered the world over for his simple yet effective spiritual teachings, wrote the book, ‘the Miracle of Mindfulness’ that explains in a subtle manner, what mindfulness is and the changes that it brings.

It was written in 1975 to bring peace to those who had suffered during the Vietnam war.  Thich Nhat Hanh explains how each moment should be absorbed, whether it is cutting a fruit or washing dishes. In that very moment lies the opportunity to work towards an enhanced self-understanding and peacefulness. One of the most respected monks in the world, Thich Nhat Hanh asks us to be completely aware of each moment and let our mind soak in the beauty of the present in its entirety.

‘Little Book of Mindfulness: 10 Minutes a Day to Less Stress, More Peace’ by Dr Patrizia Collard

Little Book of Mindfulness is like a practical guide to meditation. It is a beautifully colour-illustrated book of 40 easy ways to be mindful every day with easy explanations. Through her book, Dr Patrizia Collard shows how to incorporate a simple 5 to 10-minute practice into your day to free yourself from stress and head towards more peace. Dr Collard is a psychotherapist and mindfulness teacher and her book is a must-have to set yourself on the path to mindfulness. This book has many practical exercises like ‘Talk to Anger and Let it Go’ and inspirational readings, making it a great resource for practitioners of all levels.

Seeking the Heart of Wisdom: The Path of Insight Meditation (Shambhala Classics) – Joseph Goldstein, Jack Kornfield, Dalai Lama and Robert K Hall MD

As a beginner, there are challenges galore when starting mediative practice. Apart from one’s mind wandering while trying to meditate, people often experience discomfort in maintaining posture as well. This book addresses each obstacle that is usually faced in meditative practice. It is an excellent guide for beginners as well as more experienced practitioners.

Sensational Meditation for Children: Child-Friendly Meditation Techniques Based on the Five Senses by Sarah Wood Vallely

You might have found your child distracted more often than you’d like. Their focus wavers even more now, thanks to gadgets. Sarah Wood Vallely, an art teacher who now teaches meditation to kids, uses science and real-life examples to explain the why and how of meditation for children in this book.

She teaches guided breathing meditation where the children imagine being in certain places and doing certain things, leading to increased focus, a sense of wellbeing, facilitated learning and even improved health.


Who is Thich Nhat Hanh?

Thich Nhat Hanh was a Vietnamese Buddhist Zen master who was revered the world over for his simple yet effective spiritual teachings.

When you practice meditation, what are the challenges you face?

When you get into meditation, it’s your own mind which challenges you the most. As much as you try to remain in the moment and focus on breathing, your mind wanders away at every possible thought, and gives rise to a few unpleasant ones too, generating stress and anxiety.

Which book is called a meditation masterpiece?

‘Mindfulness in Plain English’ by Bhante Henepola Gunaratana‌ is considered a ‘masterpiece’ by experts.




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