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Tibetan Meditation Rug

Tibetan meditation rug, traditionally, is made of wool, in a special warp-faced method that creates a pattern on the front of the Tibetan meditation rug, but leaves no pattern or knots showing on the back. A Tibetan meditation rug is made only with natural dyes derived from vegetables, roots, and minerals. This tradition goes back hundreds of years.
A Tibetan meditation rug can form a special part of your meditation practice. The use of a Tibetan meditation rug may not seem as if it could become an important part of your meditation practice, after all it is only a rug isn’t it? I mean, what makes a Tibetan meditation rug any better for meditation than say a rug bought from a local department store? Well let me explain exactly what a Tibetan meditation rug is and just how it can become an integral part of your meditation practice…

Meditation is an ancient art, practiced for centuries in Asia and India as part of Hindu and Buddhist practice. Among the most well known forms of Buddhist practice is Tibetan Buddhism. Tibet is the home of the famous Dalai Lama, spiritual and philosophical mentor to many around the world and thought to be among the wisest people alive. In Tibetan meditative practice, the use of meditation rugs is common. The practitioner of meditation and deliberation sits upon the rug, both to protect them from the ground, and to provide a sacred space in which to practice contemplation. Special ceremonial rugs might be reserved only for particular religious rites and teachings.

A Tibetan meditation rug may be very simple, as are the oldest examples, or have a complex pattern. Some rugs include mandalas, symbols of the elements, or figures. A very well-known type of Tibetan meditation rug is in the shape of a tiger, one of the four important guardian animals in Tibetan Buddhist tradition. One consideration in acquiring such a rug is that because Tibet is controlled by China, and is very geographically remote and this makes the import of Tibetan meditation rugs difficult.

A Tibetan meditation rug can be used for reflection and rumination alone, or as the support for a meditation cushion and table. These rugs are small, and can be stored easily in a small space. The wool from which they are constructed has been thought to absorb and contain the vibrations of the user, creating a more sacred meditation space. The use of a Tibetan meditation rug can provide a feeling of connection with the traditions of Tibetan Buddhist meditative practice and all the associated traditions. 

Tibetan meditation rugs are part of an ancient tradition of hand crafting. They are still made today in much the same way as they were one hundred years ago, using the same materials. One of these sacred items can help to make you feel as though you are continuing an ancient tradition of meditation, bringing the practitioner of meditation closer to the natural world which surrounds us. The use of a Tibetan meditation rug has been said to be beneficial to meditative practices because of their natural components, dedicated craftsmanship, and the sacred symbols woven into their fabric. 

By Lisa Bull

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