I have been looking for a meditative exercise which would complement my worship practices.

either something to use before Worship to be put into the appropriate mindset or something which can be used outside of Shul as a personal development aid.

The problem I have is I cannot get a straight answer from anybody regarding what that might be.

I'm a Jew. (shocking, I know)

I'm not a Buddhist or a Hindu or whatever else you might lump in with "meditation" faiths. I'm worried that I might be tricked into adopting a practice which is really a remixed form of a non-Jewish practice. It's important that the practice is rooted in Judaism.

I spoke with one person who directed me to a "Rabbi" who "Studied Jewish meditation" for many years. It turned out he traveled to India and lived on a Ashram (Hindu monastery) where he learned from Hindu teachers. I simply couldn't accept that guidance.

I don't want to adopt a spiritual practice which would run counter to Judaism. I want something which is meditative but I know wouldn't be a form of idolatry being lumped into Jewish practice. That is my worry.

I've heard that there are Chasidic practices of meditation but I've never been given a clear answer as to what that might be.

I've also heard about meditation ideas related to the Kabbalah but I don't know if that's legitimate or not. (legitimate meaning hearsay from Kabbalah interpretations VS Rabbinically endorsed practices) I'm basically left digging through a haystack of BS hoping to find my needle of truth.

Is there a specific practice which someone could point me in the direction of?

  • 1
    Hitbodedut? (Breslover...)
    – ezra
    Mar 19 '17 at 18:53
  • @Ezra Isn't Hitbodedut just praying privately in solitude? I'm not doubting it can be meditative but it isn't necessarily a meditative practice in the form of an organized meditation, you know what I mean? Say controlled breathing or a mantra or some sort of physical movement for concentration/calmness/etc. You get what I mean?
    – user13783
    Mar 19 '17 at 21:55
  • Na Nach Nachma Nachman MeUman is a mantra. ;-P Just kidding, I feel you entirely.
    – ezra
    Mar 20 '17 at 1:38

I would recomment R' Aryeh Kaplan's book, Jewish Meditation: A Practical Guide. It is halachically kosher and quite comprehensive

If you are interested in more theoretical sources, same author has

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