A meditation teacher helps students learn the philosophies behind meditation, determine how meditation may help them, and learn particular meditation techniques to use. Meditation teachers differ, however, when it comes to how they teach their students. Some focus on providing a history of meditation and an overview of techniques while others also serve as guides for students as they work to learn the techniques and put them into practice. Many also lead sessions in which students can practice the techniques they learn in the same room with their teachers.
Often, meditation teachers teach students about the history of meditation, but what they teach may vary. Some might provide a basic overview and include details about related techniques and philosophies while others focus on the history of one specific type of meditation. Many teachers also provide details about the religious concepts surrounding meditation. It is important to note, however, that some types of meditation are secular in nature, which means they are not based in religion. As such, some teachers will not depend on or utilize religious concepts when teaching these techniques.
Some meditation teachers may also teach students about the various benefits meditation may offer. For example, a meditation teacher might teach about the benefits of meditation for relieving stress and focusing the mind. He may also teach about possible physical health benefits, such as the lowering of one's blood pressure and cholesterol, and improving one's respiratory functions.
Typically, meditation teachers also instruct their students in how to perform meditation techniques. Many teach their students the techniques used in the various forms of meditation using a step-by-step approach. Some teachers, however, may explain the techniques and not provide step-by-step guidance or coaching. This is often particularly true of teachers who provide instruction online or via book-based courses. Others might provide guidance by having students practice techniques in front of them and then give feedback as students proceed or after meditation sessions.
Sometimes a meditation teacher will also train others who want to become instructors. In such a case, a meditation teacher may teach his students not only how to meditate themselves but also how to effectively lead others and how to teach the various types of meditation techniques. This type of instruction may not only cover methods of teaching meditation techniques in various types of settings, but also how to teach the history of meditation and provide other types of helpful background information.