Meditation is a simple yet powerful mental training tool, and it’s accessible to anyone who's open to its stress-relieving and mind-centering abilities. No matter what your personal preferences may be, there’s a meditation technique for pretty much everyone. And the Duchess of Sussex is no exception. According to Meghan Markle’s blog, The Tig (R.I.P.), Vedic meditation is very much her thing. You might be thinking, "What in the heck is that?" But you should know that this meditation routine is seriously accessible to anyone inclined to give it a try.
Vedic meditation comes from the Veda, which is the ancient Indian system of knowledge from which yoga, meditation, and Ayurvedic medicine all stem, according to the New York Meditation Center. (Markle's mom, Doria Ragland, is a yoga teacher, it should be noted.) Veda is essentially the wellspring of all Eastern philosophy, and according to the Meditation Trust, Vedic meditation originates from the original Vedic texts, which were first written down over 5,000 years ago. Vedic meditation is not associated with any religion and centers on the repetition of a single mantra that you silently repeat throughout your meditation in order to help quiet your mind.
Per the Tig's 2015 post, which is viewable through the Wayback Machine, Vedic meditation is “That type of meditation that … people say changes their life and the trajectory of their future — more success, more fulfillment, more happiness, less worry,” Markle wrote. And according to the New York Meditation Center, you don’t have to “ditch your latte and switch to kale juice” to give it a shot.
The Tig notes that a Vedic meditation is all about going with the flow of your thoughts, noticing those thoughts, and then gently bringing your attention back to your breathing in a non-judgmental way. Thoughts come and go, but it’s not helpful to struggle against them. Thoughts just happen. “It’s OK to get lost in your thoughts. And whenever you realize you you’re meditating, just passively begin to notice your breathing again,” Vedic meditation coach, Light Watkins, told The Tig.
Watkins also said that with Vedic meditation, the key is to not resist whatever comes up during your meditation session. Whether it’s song lyrics, random thoughts, feelings, or a conversation you had with your best friend in 2006, Watkins suggested that you “let the act of meditating become synonymous with both noticing your breathing and getting lost in your thoughts … Embrace all mental experiences without concern, remorse, or regret,” Watkins said. “Expect your mind to wander away from noticing your breath. Do not fight this; it’s a natural occurrence.”
The Tig further notes that Vedic meditation is the simple act of sitting comfortably, closing your eyes, and noticing your breathing while also observing those times when you get lost in your thoughts, while remembering to bring your awareness back to your breathing again. Watkins suggests that it’s best to set a time of 10 minutes for your meditation, and when time’s up, slowly open your eyes and end your session. The New York Meditation Center notes that Vedic meditation can also include the use of mantras that you repeat silently to yourself during your meditation.
Markle wrote that, for her, meditation was “endlessly daunting at first (the thoughts, the distractions, the boredom of it), but soon [it] became the quietude that rocked my world.” So, whether you’re a meditation newbie or a seasoned Vedic practitioner, there are pretty much zero drawbacks to a regular meditation practice. And with a simple and accessible routine like this one, there’s really no reason not to give it a try.