by spiritual meditator
Buddhist meditations have always been central to the religion. Buddha himself achieved enlightenment whilst meditating beneath a Bodhi tree. Buddhism is made up of two classes of meditative techniques and methods, Vipassana and Shamatha. Both of which need to be mastered in order to achieve enlightenment.
Buddhist meditation encompasses a variety of meditation techniques that develop mindfulness, concentration, tranquility and insight. Core meditation techniques are preserved in ancient Buddhist texts and have proliferated and diversified through the millennia of teacher-student transmissions.
Non-Buddhists use these techniques for the pursuit of physical and mental health as well as for non-Buddhist spiritual aims. Buddhists pursue meditation as part of the path toward Enlightenment and Nirvana.
The closest words for meditation in the classical languages of Buddhism are bhāvanā and jhāna (Pāli; Skt.: dhyāna).
Given the large number and diversity of traditional Buddhist meditation practices, this article primarily identifies authoritative contextual frameworks - both contemporary and canonical - for the variety of practices. For those seeking school-specific meditation instruction, it might be most expedient to simply review articles listed in the "See also" section below.