When you sit down to meditate, you need to have the proper equipment. This doesn’t mean that you need to have a lot of things, but having the proper tools will make your meditation journey that much easier and more pleasant.
One of the most important tools for meditators is the meditation pillow, also called meditation cushion. Luckily there are plenty of pillows, cushions and mats that are widely available for the aspiring meditator, however as meditation is as ancient as the world, there are some pillows that have very easily stood the test of time and are highly recommended by meditators who practice regularly.
Choosing the right meditation pillow will help you greatly and will make a huge difference in having a successful meditation session. While simply sitting on a chair or on the floor, or even in the bed (not recommended!) are ways that meditation can be done, being able to maintain the right posture for a longer time will prove to be difficult and the fact that it will cause you being uncomfortable, means that it will continuously interrupt your meditation.
Depending on your meditation place, you can choose a specific meditation pillow. This means meditating on concrete will require a different type of meditation cushion from meditating on the grass, on wooden floor, etc.
For meditating on harder surfaces, such as wood or concrete, you will need a two stage pillow. This particular pillow has as base a solid-style foam, and as top part being made of duck down or soft synthetic inner fill. Using a regular pillow on hard surfaces only means that eventually you will get a sore back and rear, and you will find quite difficult to get up after a while.
When you meditate you need to sit up straight, and without a proper cushion you will find it difficult to do so. So when you buy a cushion or pillow, try to get one with a back support as well. Basically this will allow you to have the feeling that you are sitting on chair. The main advantage of this style of meditation pillow is that because your back sits straight, you will be able to control your breathing much more effectively during the meditation session.
Should you choose to meditate on grass, you need a pillow that is light-weight with a soft inner fill. Typical such pillows are those with nylon-based fill. Of course, as you will sit on the grass, make sure that the pillow can be washed by machine, as grass stains are quite difficult to remove without a heavy and strong washing.
Before you buy your meditation cushion, make sure that you are allowed to test it first. Sit on the cushion and see if it supports your weight, and that you do not have the feeling that you’re simply sitting on the floor. It also need to feel comfortable, but not too comfortable, as that will make you slump over the pillow and do more daydreaming than meditation.
One recommended meditation cushions is the one called the ‘Zafu meditation cushion‘. You should be able to find this pillow in most yoga or meditation shops. Basically the Zafu cushions provide a much better spine alignment and proper height for a deeper and more comfortable meditation. They have been proven to be the best type for meditation practices in the Western world.