Meditation—There’s An App For That!

Meditation is not new; it’s been practiced for thousands of years. But everything old is new again when you do it for the first time—or in a new way.

I just came from my local library where I learned about an app called Insight Timer. Brad, the technology librarian, introduced some basic tenets of meditation (posture & setting) and then invited us into a fifteen minute meditation using the app. I was sold.

Meditation isn’t new for me. Back in college, I tried centering prayer, a contemplative practice of returning over and over again to a place of inner stillness. More recently, I’ve tried some guided meditations from Dr. Joe Dispenza’s books on the power of the mind and epigenetics. Most days, I try to begin with some form of purposeful prayer and/or meditation. But using an app is a new twist.

The beauty of Insight Timer is in its levels of complexity. It’s a timer. That alone is helpful when you’re squeezing in your meditation before you leave for work or between appointments or just to keep you from checking your watch. It also provides a variety of ambient sounds and music tracks to help block out auditory distractions. You can choose beginning, intermittent, and ending bells and gongs to suit your tastes. And even add time at the end of a meditation if you’re not ready to stop when the bell chimes.

If you don’t know where to start or if you’re looking for something different or specific, there are guided meditations. Plenty of them. I saw one that lasted only three minutes. Others were listed for fifty minutes or more. You can pay a fee and download them. Or you can use the app for free. It looks like there’s plenty to explore. And now that I’ve downloaded the app, I intend to do just that.

For those who crave the dopamine hits, Insight Timer will keep track of how long and how many days you meditate. You get stars for reaching milestones. And you can even connect with others who’re using the app: social media meets the inner sanctum.

So, why not give it a try? Maybe the age-old practice of meditation can be new again — for you! 🙂