Meditating in nature seems like an appealing idea for many. But is it any better than meditating in a normal room? For some, it is, but for a vast majority, it won’t matter where they meditate. What matters is that they manage to meditate.
But meditating in nature provides some advantages, such as feeling closer to mother earth, and many monks choose to go to nature to meditate.
Some also feel a closer spiritual connection within and that it’s easier to build the habit since, for the most part, nature provides an environment free of distractions.
But I’ll go more in-depth as to why you might want to meditate in nature, remember that, at the end of the day, it’s how you feel after the experience and if you manage to stick with the habit that matters.
Don’t just meditate in nature because it’s trendy for most meditators — everyone’s situation is different, and meditation at its core shouldn’t require anything fancy to be done correctly.
It’s a Great Way to Clear Your Mind
It’s no wonder many choose nature as a spot to get inspiration or clear their mind. It’s a way to relax, outside of meditation in itself.
And if you already start the meditation in a somewhat relaxed state, you’re more likely to have a relaxed experience.
Many enter a semi-meditative state when they are in nature by default, by appreciating the beauty nature has to offer. It adds an extra layer of relaxation on top of the already relaxing nature that meditation brings.
The mind already can be in the present moment but the mind doesn’t always want to be in the present moment, because the mind can sometimes make us think that the only way to survive is to obsess over what we have no control over, the future and the past.
But if nature helps you clear your mind and start meditation from a clear mind, you could benefit from adding meditation to the equation, and as a result, you might find less resistance from the mind to kick you out of that state.
Meditation in itself can also make you more creative, and you might find new angles and perspectives of thinking of things that you might’ve not thought of before, all because you chose to let yourself take a break, much like you take a break when you need to grow muscles.
Nature already reflects a pretty blissful state, and while you can’t control what will happen during the meditation, the practice might help you keep up that blissful state and enjoy the now, which is a plus for meditation.
It Can Feel like a More ‘Real’ Way To Meditate
When we think of meditation, what comes to mind for many is a monk sitting at the top of some mountains, attaining some wisdom from mother nature and meditation. But it’s not a cliché. You can derive a lot of benefits from quieting your mind and simply acknowledging what’s around you.
I’m sure most would agree it’s far more pleasant to be surrounded by the sound of birds, leaves, and wind than the sound of loud cars honking. Seen from that perspective, not all distractions are created equal and some are more tolerable than others.
And since the meditation feels more real when done in nature, you might be less likely to doubt your practice, and it’s that doubt that often affects the quality of the meditation, and by extension, your ability to sit through the meditation as a whole. But you have to start somewhere.
Advanced meditators start where you are right now, and the less you doubt your practice and just allow it to be, as well as allow yourself to learn without judging yourself of the practice, the faster you’ll make progress with meditation.
And the faster you’ll be able to reap the gains (or lack thereof) of meditation. If you start meditating in nature and enjoy the process, it’s going to be easier to adopt the practice as a habit.
The downside is that you might not always have nature available to you, and you’ll want to pick up the habit you learned from nature so you can do it everywhere, and ideally, remain mindful twenty-four-seven.
The Downsides of Meditating In Nature
As with anything good, there are downsides to doing it in nature. Nothing prevents the flies and bees from getting in the way of your experience, stinging you, and overall ruining your experience.
Meditation, although very easy to do, has a difficult element to it, so don’t expect the meditation to be easier just because you make some tweaks, and don’t make it your goal either. Just because you’re meditating in nature is no guarantee you’ll have an uninterrupted experience.
Roadblocks will happen, sometimes, to a higher degree than other times, but it’s all about being open. Another con for many is that doing the practice in nature can be a way out of your comfort zone, especially if you are used to meditating in one spot.
Generally, this would be a blessing in disguise but there are some times when it’d favor you more to remain within a range of comfort, especially if you have one spot you consistently meditate in that doesn’t necessarily happen to be nature.
You don’t want to break that pattern. But if you’re able to stick with the practice regardless, by all means, always be open to experimenting with new places.
Are Meditations Done In Nature Superior?
This will always depend on you and your ability to focus. If you’ve never meditated before and started in nature right out of the bat, it might not be ideal since meditation in itself takes time to adapt to.
Meditating in nature will only be more effective if you make it, but if you just sit in nature worrying and overthinking your practice, you might as well not do it as a whole, since it’d defeat the purpose.
One major plus to meditating in nature is that it can bring you closer to nature, and make you want to spend more time in nature, which, most of the time, it’s healthy for you.
There’s after all a correlation between longevity and spending more time in nature and the same can be said about happiness. But of course, this will ultimately depend on person to person.
But since meditation in nature clears your mind, some do report feeling more alert when they meditate in nature. There is no right or wrong in this case, but if you’re feeling more alert, that’s gonna be one of the most important pieces to having a long-lasting deep meditation.
Now, upon looking at the big picture, meditating in nature isn’t better or worse, it all comes down to you and what you make meditation work with. Meditation might work worse for you in nature because you’re not used to it, and you might have a negative experience.
The best place to meditate will always be the place where you can disconnect from your mind and body and just be.
Nature will often prevent the mind from chattering and the mind wandering since there’s so much interesting around that it’s a great way to quieten the mind and because the distractions happen to be rather pleasant, there’s less of a resistance to run away from the distraction.
What you resist tends to stick, whereas with what you allow is what easier goes away. If distractions are treated the same way, it could prove beneficial to your meditation practice, in the sense that you treat these distractions with indifference.