What’s the Difference Between Meditation and Contemplation?

There are many misconceptions about the words “meditation” and “contemplation.’ People often use them interchangeably, but they actually have different meanings and purposes.

In this blog post, we’ll take a look at meditation and contemplation and explore the differences between them.

What Is Meditation?

Meditation is a practice that allows you to slow down, center yourself, and focus on one thing at a time to quiet your mind which then lets you experience inner peace and clarity.

You can meditate by focusing on your breath, repeating a mantra in your head, or just sitting quietly and allowing yourself to clear your mind.

Moreover, it can be done for any length of time, from a few minutes to several hours. Some forms of meditation involve bringing your attention back to the object of focus whenever it wanders away, while other forms allow you to let your thoughts run free without judgment.

If you’re new to meditation, here’s how you can meditate: 

  1. Sit upright in a comfortable position with your eyes closed or look down at the floor in front of you. 
  2. Focus on breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth. 
  3. Try not to think about anything else – focus only on your breath. 
  4. If thoughts come to mind that has nothing to do with the present moment or the task at hand, just acknowledge them without judging yourself or trying to stop them then gently bring yourself back to your breathing.

The goal of meditation is to get rid of stress and anxiety by letting go of thoughts that keep you from being present in the moment. Meditation also helps people gain insight into their minds and bodies to better understand themselves and others around them.

What Is Contemplation?

Contemplation is a form of thinking that is often used to reflect on personal experiences and beliefs making it an important tool for self-reflection and growth.

By taking time to reflect on their own experiences and beliefs, thinkers can gain a deeper understanding of themselves or the problems. This can help them grow as individuals and make better choices in their lives.

In contemplation, the thinker first focuses on the question or problem at hand. They may then explore different ways of thinking about the question and considers different possible solutions.

With that being said, contemplation can also be helpful in problem-solving. If you’re faced with a complex problem, contemplation can help you break the problem down into smaller parts and explore different possible solutions. This kind of thinking can help you develop new ideas and ways of solving problems.

In Meditation, Thoughts and Feelings Are Often Acknowledged and Then Let Go, While in Contemplation, Thoughts and Feelings Are Often Explored and Examined

When you sit down to meditate, you may think that your goal is to clear your mind and eliminate all thoughts. But that’s usually not the case – instead, you often find that there are many thoughts running through your mind throughout the day that don’t go away just because you don’t pay attention to them.

Instead, when we meditate, we learn to acknowledge our thoughts and feelings without judging them as good or bad (or right or wrong). This is because we learn to experience ourselves fully at that moment, without judging whether we like the feeling or not.

Meditation also helps us become more aware of what’s happening around us – both in our bodies as well as in our environment. This can help us identify patterns in our lives that are harmful or unhelpful so that we can work to change those patterns through new behaviors instead of automatically reacting every time something happens.

In contemplation, on the other hand, thoughts and feelings are often explored and examined. This is because in contemplation the mind focuses on a single thought or object. This allows for a deep exploration of the thought or object and the feelings and emotions associated with it. This way, contemplation can be a powerful tool for exploring the inner self.

This process of exploration can be both enlightening and therapeutic. It can help us understand ourselves better and deal more healthily with our emotions. It can also help us find meaning in life and connect with our spiritual side.

Contemplation can be a very personal experience, and everyone has their own approach to it. Some people may prefer to focus on their thoughts and feelings, while others prefer contemplative practices such as meditation or prayer. Whatever you choose, contemplation is a powerful tool for exploring your inner self.

In Meditation, Practitioners Often Use Mantras or Specific Chants, While Any Type of Focus or Concentration Is Possible in Contemplation

Mantras are often used in meditation to help the practitioner focus. A mantra is a word or phrase that is repeated over and over to help the mind stay focused. In some cases, the mantra is spoken aloud, in other cases it is simply repeated silently.

There are many different mantras that can be used in meditation, and each has its own purpose. Some mantras are used to create a sense of peace and tranquility, while others are used to focus the mind on the present moment.

Chanting is another form of focus assistance that can be used in meditation. It involves repeating a specific sound or phrase. This type of focus assistance can be helpful in bringing the mind back to the present moment when it begins to wander.

Chanting also helps create a sense of unity and connection with others. This can be especially helpful for people who feel isolated or alone.

Meanwhile, any type of concentration or focus is possible in contemplation. Through practice, one can learn to focus on a single thought or object to the exclusion of all other distractions.

There are many different types of focus that are possible in contemplation. One type is the focus on the breath. This involves focusing on the sensation of the breath as it flows in and out of the body. This type of concentration helps to calm the mind and body and can be used as a form of meditation.

Another type of concentration is to focus on a mantra. A mantra is a word or phrase that is repeated over and over as a form of meditation. Focusing on a mantra can help to quiet the mind and create a sense of peace.

In addition, there are many different objects that can be focused on during contemplation. These objects might include things like nature, symbols, scriptures, or images.

Contemplating these objects can help one understand their meaning. In addition, focusing on these objects can lead to a sense of peace and tranquility.

In Meditation, the Goal Is to Achieve a State of Mindfulness or Detachment, While in Contemplation, the Goal Is to Gain a Deeper Understanding of Oneself and One’s Place in the World

In meditation, the goal is usually about achieving a state of mindfulness or detachment from the thoughts and feelings that arise. This can be a difficult task, as the mind is often very active and jumps from one thought to another.

However, with practice, it is possible to learn to simply observe these thoughts without getting caught up in them. In this way, meditation can help us become more aware of our thoughts and feelings and eventually let them go.

One of the most important benefits of meditation is that we learn to be more present in the moment. When we are able to focus on the present moment, we are less likely to get caught up in negative thoughts or emotions.

This can be helpful in everyday life as it allows us to focus on what is happening right now instead of worrying about the past or the future.

Another benefit of meditation is that it can help us connect with our inner selves. When we are able to quiet our minds, we can begin to explore our thoughts and feelings more deeply. This can be helpful in developing a better understanding of ourselves and becoming more self-aware.

Contemplation, on the other hand, is a practice that allows a person to focus on their inner thoughts and feelings. The goal of contemplation is to gain a deeper understanding of oneself and one’s place in the world. This can be done through prayer, or simply spending time alone in thought.

Contemplation can help us identify our values and beliefs and how they affect our lives. It can also give us insight into our strengths and weaknesses, as well as our hopes and fears.

In short, contemplation can help us better understand who we are, what we want from life, and how we can achieve our goals.

What Are the Contemplative Exercises?

There are a variety of contemplative exercises that can be used to cultivate mindfulness and inner peace. Some of the most common exercises are deep breathing, visualization, and the repetition of mantras.

Deep breathing is a great way to focus your attention on the present moment and calm your mind. Simply sit in a comfortable position, take a few deep breaths, and focus on the air flowing in and out of your body.

Visualization is another great way to focus on the present moment and achieve a sense of inner peace. To do this, imagine that you’re in a quiet and peaceful environment, such as a beach or a meadow.

Repeating a mantra is another simple way to focus your thoughts and achieve a sense of inner peace. A mantra is simply a word or phrase that you say over and over to yourself. Any word or phrase that makes you feel calm and peaceful can be used as a mantra.

The best way to find out which contemplative exercises work best for you is to experiment with different exercises and see what helps you the most. Don’t be afraid to try new exercises if the ones you’re currently using aren’t working well for you. The more you practice mindfulness and peace of mind, the easier it’ll be for you to maintain these states, even when life gets tough.


In conclusion, there are some key distinctions between the two. In general, meditation is more about focusing on the breath and being in the present moment, while contemplation is about thinking deeply about a particular topic or question.

Both practices can help improve mental clarity and reduce stress, but it’s important to choose the practice that works best for you. If you’re looking for a way to clear your mind and relieve stress, you should try both meditation and contemplation and find out which method works best for you.

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