Published on October 8, 2019 – Last Updated on March 29, 2022
Meditation comes in many forms in many cultures. Some cultures perform meditation while counting off beads on a cord. Others form meditation while staring at a flickering candle. One of the most widespread forms of meditation practiced around the globe is walking meditation.
What Is a Walking Meditation?
Walking meditation is a meditation that is done while in motion. The term ‘walking’ means you are moving. If you travel in a wheelchair, you can do a rolling meditation. It is all the same thing.
The focus in this meditation is the act of moving. For walking, that would involve contact with the foot to the Earth.
Where Can You Do a Walking Meditation?
The beauty of walking meditation is that it can be done just about anywhere. You can go to a custom-designed labyrinth or spiral. Another place you can go is to a local park or nature preserve. You can go to an enclosed mall during their quiet hours. Going to a museum or public building. You can even walk around a home or a room. It doesn’t matter in the end where you are while you do this. It only matters that you do it.
How To Do a Meditation
To prepare, make sure you choose comfortable, loose clothing for the location you’re going to walk in. Consider dressing in layers to account for weather changes if it’s outdoors. If you’re indoors, consider walking barefoot so you can more closely pay attention to the motions. Always move in a way that is safe for your health situation.
Begin by standing with your feet hip-width apart. Balance yourself evenly on your feet. Let your hands hang loose at your sides. Lift the crown of your head.
Breathe in, filling your upper chest, mid-chest, and lower abdomen. Let your abdomen fill out and expand. Feel that fresh, healing oxygen draws into you.
Now press it out, release it, expel it, and free all the toxins and waste. Those are what the plants need to grow. You are done with them. Free yourself of them.
Breathe in, more profound, fuller, enriching the cycle. Draw yourself into the breaths.
When you are ready, begin your first step.
Reach out slowly but with a balance to place your heel down on the ground before you. Sense as your body rolls forward onto the arch and then the ball. Your weight automatically shifts to the other side. Let the other foot come forward and note how the first foot is releasing while the second foot claims its place on the Earth. Again think about the heel, arch, ball, toe as the first foot comes forward again.
This is the cycle of life. The yin and yang. The give and take. Life has its moments and waves, everything in its turn. Everything changes and grows and diminishes. Doors are opening and closing and opening again.
Let the feet move. Allow them to carry you. Let them connect you with this one Earth we all share.
Thoughts will drift in. It’s what reviews do. They flit and spin. Acknowledge they are there without judgment. They are a part of life. Then remove your attention from them and let them drift on. Return your attention to your step. To the heel. The arch.
Another thought will come in. Be compassionately gentle with yourself. Be non-judgmental. Ideas come and go. Let them go. Let them drift on with loving-kindness. Return your focus to your step.
When you are done walking, stand still and draw in deep, cleansing breaths. Give yourself gratitude for engaging in this practice. Savor the moments. Know that every moment is simply a step in the entire journey with which we have been blessed.
Check out our walking meditation app.